In a court document filed in Fulton County Friday, District Attorney Fani Willis acknowledged having a personal connection with an external prosecutor she selected to oversee the election interference lawsuit involving former President Donald Trump and his associates.
However, she refuted allegations that the connection compromised the case’s integrity. Willis described the accusations against her as “meritless” and “salacious.” She requested a judge to dismiss the motions from Trump and other co-defendants aiming to remove her and her office from the case, advocating for this decision to be made without conducting a hearing.
Willis countered accusations of improper conduct, asserting that no proof existed to suggest that her relationship with the appointed special prosecutor, Nathan Wade, had negatively impacted the proceedings.
According to court documents, however, Willis admitted to developing a personal relationship with outside counsel Nathan Wade, who was appointed in 2021 to investigate possible interference in the 2020 election. This relationship evolved beyond their professional association and friendship.
“In 2022, District Attorney Willis and I developed a personal relationship in addition to our professional association and friendship,” Wade admitted in the sworn deposition.
“In the Spring of 2021, District Attorney Willis asked me and two other attorneys to assist her in looking for a competent, trustworthy attorney to manage and lead the investigation of possible attempts to interfere with the administration of the 2020 election,” Wade continued.
BREAKING: Fani Willis acknowledges having a personal connection with Nathan Wade.
Wade was the external prosecutor selected to oversee the election interference case involving Trump and his associates.
However, Willis refuted allegations that the connection compromised the… pic.twitter.com/KgWsm342I8
— TP Breaking Alerts (@tpbreaking) February 2, 2024
“There are no joint or shared finances or financial accounts; There is not now and has never been any shared household; There is no financial dependency or merging of daily expenses; Financial responsibility for personal travel taken is divided roughly evenly between the two, with neither being primarily responsible for expenses of the other, and all expenses paid for with individual personal funds,” the document writes.
“I have no financial interest in the outcome of the 2020 election interference case or in the conviction of any defendant,” said Wade. “No funds paid to me in compensation for my role as Special Prosecutor have been shared with or provided to District Attorney Willis. The District Attorney received no funds or personal financial gain from my position as Special Prosecutor.”
In the documents, Willis and Wade disclose having a “personal relationship” that began in 2022, well before the indictment of Trump in 2023. Wade clarified that the expenses for their travel were covered using “personal funds,” and not from the approximately $700,000 he received from Fulton County.
This is somewhat deceptive, however, as it skirts around the reality that Willis was the recipient of lavish gifts from Wade. These gifts were never disclosed to Fulton County officials as mandated by law.
Court documents submitted last month by Michael Roman, a co-defendant of Trump, contained the allegations against Willis. The documents claimed then that Willis was involved in an “improper” affair with Wade. The documents further allege that Wade, who reportedly lacks experience in RICO and felony prosecutions, has charged taxpayers around $600,000 since January 2022.
According to Roman’s filing, Wade invoiced Fulton County for 24 hours of work on a single day in November 2021, shortly after he was appointed special prosecutor. The filing also suggests that Willis financially benefited from what is described as her lover’s inflated taxpayer-funded salary, allegedly using it to fund lavish vacations together.
“Willis allegedly paid her secret boyfriend a significantly higher hourly rate than another one of her special prosecutors who actually has significant experience,” Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene wrote (R-GA) in a complaint filed last week. “And with the nearly $700,000 Wade has collected in government funds as one of Willis’ special prosecutors, he has allegedly taken her on a luxury Caribbean cruise, a trip to Napa, and other lavish trips.”
This admission comes amid scrutiny of Willis’ decision to appoint Wade as a special prosecutor, a move that has been defended as within her constitutional duties. Critics have argued that such relationships could compromise the objectivity and impartiality required in the administration of justice.