Judge McAfee Allows Trump, Co-Defendants To Appeal Fani Willis Decision

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Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee just granted a “certificate of immediate review” to Trump’s legal team and the lawyers for some of his co-defendants. That means there will be an immediate hearing to determine whether Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis should be dismissed from the ongoing RICO case against Trump and his co-defendants.

As background, Judge McAfee recently ruled that, under Georgia law, there was the appearance of a conflict of interest, but not actual impropriety, in DA Willis’ relationship with former special prosecutor Nathan Wade. His decision meant that DA Willis did not have to resign, but special prosecutor Nathan Wade did. Trump and some of his co-defendants appealed that decision, demanding that Willis be removed as well.

In his recent ruling on the matter, Judge McAfee’s “certificate of immediate review” means that the motion demanding DA Willis be removed is of the utmost importance to the case and so must be reviewed immediately. DA Willis and her legal team now how have the opportunity to petition the appellate court to overturn Judge McAfee’s decision.

Commenting on the matter in a post on X, legal analyst Phil Holloway said, “BREAKING: Judge grants “certificate of immediate review” in the #FaniWillis disqualification motion. This means the Court of Appeals has to also approve, but it’s likely to be allowed. The issue is too important”

In the March 20 Certificate of Immediate Review itself, Judge McAfee wrote, “Upon review of the Defendants’ joint motion for a Certificate of Immediate Review, the Court finds that the Order on the Defendants’ Motions to Dismiss and Disqualify the Fulton County District At torney issued March 15, 2024, “is of such importance to the case that immediate review should be had[.]” O.C.G.A. § 5-6-34(b).”

Continuing, he wrote, “Accordingly, the requested motion is granted. The challenged order is not one of final judgment, and the State has informed the Court that it has complied with the order’s demands. Thus, unless directed otherwise by an appellate court, supersedeas shall only apply to the order being appealed. See Sanders v. State, 313 Ga. 191, 192 (2022); Styles v. State, 245 Ga. App. 90, 93 (2000) (overruled on other grounds) (Blackburn, P.J., concurring specially) (“[A] trial court’s hands are [not] tied as to other matters not affecting those issues on appeal, during the pendency of such appeal.”).”

Judge McAfee then added that other issues must be addressed as well, writing, “The Court intends to continue addressing the many other unrelated pending pretrial motions, regardless of whether the petition is granted within 45 days of filing, and even if any subsequent appeal is expedited by the appellate court.”

Commenting on Mr. Holloway’s post, one commenter wrote, “Maybe the appellate court will bring justice to this entire abomination to justice. I hope they remove DA Fani Willis & her entire office from the political witch-hunt case. Not sure if they can remedy this with a dismissal of all charges with prejudice, but I hope they can!!!”

This latest bad news for DA Willis comes amidst claims in an ethics complaint from Atlanta resident Stephen Kramer, who claimed that DA Willis was using her position “to threaten her paramour’s estranged wife during her proceeding. D.A. Willis was using the full power of her office to threaten Ms. Wade with criminal prosecution.”

Explaining why DA Willis allegedly made those threats against former special prosecutor Nathan Wade’s estranged wife, Kramer alleged, “This was done to prevent Ms. Wade from adequately fighting for her rights in court; to help Wade in his divorce case and ‘prevent [Willis] from being an integral part of the now-public divorce case.’”

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