Fani Willis, the Fulton County District Attorney, has been accused, in a surprising claim made by one of former President Donald Trump’s co-defendants, of employing a private attorney with whom she had a ‘romantic’ relationship to handle the prosecution of Trump.
The alarming allegations are outlined in a submission by Michael Roman, a former member of the Trump campaign who stands accused of involvement in the ‘fake electors’ scheme. Roman is one of 18 individuals arrested in Georgia with Trump.
Pursuant to an accessible court file, Willis had a personal relationship with personal attorney Nathan Wade. Wade was compensated over $600,000 as a special prosecutor to assist her office’s comprehensive probe into Trump’s bid to reverse the election. The court filing is seeking the termination of the charges against Wade.
The complaint lacks sufficient documentary evidence to support the charges. The document states that “sources close to both the special prosecutor and the district attorney have confirmed they had an ongoing, personal relationship.”
Fulton County DA Fani Willis (allegedly) sleeping with the Special Prosecutor she appointed.
His earnings – stemming from her appointment – have paid "for both of them to travel on both the Norwegian and Royal Caribbean cruise lines."
— Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) January 8, 2024
The Special Prosecutor has pocketed $1 million in legal fees.
This is the biggest RICO case in GA history – and "the special prosecutor has never tried a felony RICO case." pic.twitter.com/qhWV319reZ
— Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) January 8, 2024
TechnFog, an attorney and legal analyst, observed the remarkable court document. This is what it says:
- Open records requests to Fulton County reveal that the district attorney did not obtain county approval to appoint the special prosecutor. Why would the district attorney not obtain this approval prior to appointing the special prosecutor?
- The special prosecutor has admitted his oath was not filed prior to his work on this case. Why would the special prosecutor not just file the oath, a simple administrative task for a lawyer?
- The special prosecutor is seeking a divorce in Cobb County and sought successfully to seal those records, hiding them from public view. Why would a private citizen such as the special prosecutor shield filings related to his income and spending from public view?
- While the filings in the divorce case are sealed by Court order (the legality of which is open to question), information obtained outside of court filings indicates that the district attorney and special prosecutor have traveled personally together to such places as Napa Valley, Florida and the Caribbean and the special prosecutor has purchased tickets for both of them to travel on both the Norweigan and Royal Carribean [sic] cruise lines. Traveling together to such places as Washington, D.C. or New York City might make sense for work purposes in light of other pending litigation, but what work purpose could only be served by travel to this traditional vacation destinations?
- The district attorney and the special prosecutor have been seen in private together in and about the Atlanta area and believed to have co-habited in some form or fashion at a location owned by neither of them.
- Sources close to both the special prosecutor and the district attorney have confirmed they had an ongoing, personal relationship during the pendency of the special prosecutor’s divorce proceedings.
- According to these sources, the personal relationship between the district attorney and the special prosecutor began before this prosecution was initiated and before the district attorney appointed the special prosecutor.
- Undersigned counsel knows the special prosecutor and has researched his litigation experience. That research reveals that the special prosecutor has never tried a felony RICO case. The State of Georgia and the City of Atlanta has several lawyers who specialize in the prosecuting and defending RICO cases. Despite having access to these resources, why would the district attorney, instead, appoint someone who has never tried a felony RICO case, particularly in a case with such national significance as this one?
- The special prosecutor, based on his lack of experience in this type of felony, would not be qualified under Fulton County’s standards to be appointed to represent any defendant in this case given the complexity of the charges. If the special prosecutor is not qualified to defend this case under Fulton County’s standards, then how is he qualified to prosecute the case? Is that why the district attorney did not seek approval for his appointment? If so, why did she seek to appoint an unqualified lawyer without approval to preside over this prosecution?
- Since being appointed as special prosecutor, the special prosecutor has been paid an estimated almost $1,000,000.00 in legal fees. Of course, additional fees would be expected when private counsel is hired, but that would assume they are not in a relationship with the district attorney and they were qualified to do the work they were hired to do.
- The special prosecutor’s fees have been lucrative in comparison by any reasonable measure. The district attorney’s yearly salary, including state and county supplements, is $ 198,266.66 and the total annual budget for the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office for fiscal year 2022 was $31,541,968.00. The district attorney lobbied for additional money from Fulton County to hire lawyers and staff to clear the backlog after Covid. Why didn’t she use that money to hire qualified in-house staff to try this case? Why did she, instead, use that money to retain the special prosecutor?
“Why Is This Important?”
- The district attorney’s failure to obtain the required approval to appoint the special prosecutor prior to him obtaining indictments against Mr. Roman renders the special prosecutor’s service in that role a nullity and without effect under Georgia law, so the indictments he assisted in securing suffer from a structural and irreparable defect and must be dismissed.
- In light of the district attorney’s personal relationship to the special prosecutor prior to his appointment as the special prosecutor, his appointment created an impermissible and irreparable conflict of interest under Georgia’s Rules of Professional Conduct, which requires the disqualification of both lawyers and their respective offices and firms.
- The district attorney’s apparent intentional failure to disclose her conflict of interest to Fulton County and the Court, combined with her decision to employ the special prosecutor based on her own personal interests may well be an act to defraud the public of honest services since the district attorney “personally benefitted from an undisclosed conflict of interest” which is a crime under 18 U.S.C. § 1346 as well as a predicate act which could result in a RICO charge against both the district attorney and the special prosecutor.
- Putting aside both the legal and ethical implications of their conduct, their conduct also undermines the sanctity of the criminal justice system, erodes public trust in our judicial system, and would place them above the law. To allow this conduct to go unchecked by a powerful, public, elected official threatens to undermine the very principles of democracy that the district attorney herself claims to defend in this prosecution. It seems hard to believe that such a powerful person could escape scrutiny and accountability for such egregious conduct simply because she believes she maintains a moral high ground and holds one of the powerful positions in the State of Georgia. This is particularly true since she has used that platform and the megaphone it provides to tour the country giving interviews in her pursuit of a conviction.
The filing can be seen here.