Georgia Trump judge allows prosecutor to remain on case

By Thomson Reuters Mar 15, 2024 | 8:09 AM

(Reuters) -A judge in Georgia overseeing Donald Trump’s election interference case on Friday declined to remove the prosecutor who brought the charges over an undisclosed relationship she had with a top deputy.

The ruling by Judge Scott McAfee is a blow to the former U.S. president and Republican candidate to challenge Democratic President Joe Biden. Trump has sought to delay trials in the four criminal cases he faces until after the November election.

McAfee’s decision caps a tumultuous two months for Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, whose relationship with the special prosecutor she appointed to lead the case was revealed in a January court filing by a Trump co-defendant.

Defense lawyers said the relationship posed a conflict of interest and improperly enriched Willis and Wade, who vacationed together while Wade was drawing a government salary. McAfree said he found no conflict of interest but told Willis to avoid the “appearance of impropriety.”

Trump has pleaded not guilty in all the cases against him. He is accused in the Georgia case of illegally pressuring state officials to overturn his loss to Joe Biden there in the 2020 election.

The ruling comes after the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to review Trump’s bid for presidential immunity in his Washington election interference case, which could delay that trial until after the election.

(Reporting by Jack Queen; editing by Scott Malone and Jonathan Oatis)