On Monday, March 18, 2024, Newsweek reported that the lead defense attorney for former President Donald Trump in the Fulton County election interference case shared plans to request an immediate appeal of the judge’s recent decision regarding recusing the district attorney.

Steve Sadow, who represents Trump, said via social media that the first legal step will be asking the court to allow a pretrial appeal of Judge Scott McAfee’s order related to Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis. Judge McAfee had ruled that while the appearance of impropriety remained due to a past relationship between Willis and a special prosecutor, the evidence presented was insufficient to conclude an actual conflict of interest existed that would require Willis’ recusal.

Sadow argued that Judge McAfee did not properly consider the significance of allegations of prosecutorial misconduct against Willis and prosecutor Nathan Wade, who has since resigned, including what he says was untruthful testimony about when their personal relationship began. If granted permission for an immediate appeal, it would allow Trump’s team to challenge the order before the upcoming trial and potentially delay proceedings.

The motion for a pretrial appeal must be filed within 10 days of Judge McAfee’s order last week. However, it will be up to Judge McAfee himself to decide whether to certify the appeal.

This latest legal move comes as Fulton County continues to pursue charges against Trump and others related to alleged attempts to influence last year’s election results in Georgia. A special grand jury indicted Trump in August on racketeering charges. Trump has denied any wrongdoing and his attorneys have aggressively sought delays and Willis’ recusal.

While no trial date has yet been set, the District Attorney’s office had proposed beginning on August 5, 2024. Trump’s lawyers argued for scheduling after the potential 2024 election results and mentioned that if Trump were to win the presidency, the trial should occur only after he completes his term.

Experts noted that even if Judge McAfee allows an appeal, the Georgia Court of Appeals would still need to agree to hear the case. So Trump’s team faces multiple hurdles in achieving their goal of removing Willis from the case and potentially causing more delays in a trial that has already seen numerous legal battles.



Source: Newsweek