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Judge says Fani Willis could be ‘disqualified,’ believes hearing ‘must occur’ on relationship

Fani Willis is accused of entering an improper romantic and financial relationship with the lead prosecutor on the Georgia election interference case against former President Trump.

Published: February 12, 2024 3:47pm

Updated: February 12, 2024 4:02pm

The judge presiding over former President Donald Trump’s Georgia election interference case told the court Monday that the allegations brought against Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis “could result in disqualification.”

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee reportedly said this during a hearing on Monday to decide whether DA Willis and prosecutor Nathan Wade would have to testify on Thursday about their alleged romantic relationship.

Both Willis and Wade were subpoenaed to testify at that hearing by Michael Roman, a Trump co-defendant in the Georgia election case. Last month, Roman’s attorney filed a motion to dismiss the charges against her client and to disqualify Willis because of what she alleged was an improper romantic and financial relationship between the district attorney and her prosecutor, Nathan Wade.

Wade was paid nearly $654,000 in legal fees according to the motion. He subsequently paid for himself and Willis to go on vacations.

Though Willis admitted to having a relationship with Wade in a later court filing, she maintains that nothing about it should disqualify her from pursuing the election case against the former president and his co-defendants.

The Fulton DA’s office had moved to quash the subpoenas. Yet, the judge did not buy the arguments. “Because I think it's possible that the facts alleged by the defendant could result in disqualification, I think an evidentiary hearing must occur to establish the record on those core allegations," Judge McAfee said at the hearing.

The statements from Judge McAfee indicate that the Thursday hearing will move forward as planned.