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Nathan Wade's divorce attorney provides Trump attorneys with little extra to damn Fani Willis in ethics hearing
Photo by CHRISTIAN MONTERROSA/AFP via Getty Images

Nathan Wade's divorce attorney provides Trump attorneys with little extra to damn Fani Willis in ethics hearing

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis faces the possibility of disqualification from former President Donald Trump's Georgia election interference case over misconduct allegations. If Willis' preferred narrative and the timeline it hinges on fail to hold up in court, then the consequences could be more dire than a simple ouster.

Attorneys for Trump and those of his co-defendants pinned their hopes on additional testimony from Terrence Bradley, the former partner of and divorce attorney for Nathan Wade. After all, Bradley previously indicated to Ashleigh Merchant, an attorney for Trump co-defendant Michael Roman, that Willis began her affair with Wade prior to appointing him top prosecutor in the Georgia case.

However, during his testimony Tuesday, Bradley provided the defense with little more with which to professionally damn Willis.

Bradley — alleged by an attorney for Trump co-defendant Michael Roman to have "non-privileged, personal knowledge that the romantic relationship between Wade and Willis began prior to Willis being sworn as the district attorney for Fulton County, Georgia in January 2021" — took the stand in Willis' misconduct hearing earlier this month. When pressed for details about the affair he may have gleaned from conversations with Wade, Bradley repeatedly cited attorney-client privilege.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee determined Monday after a closed-door meeting with Bradley that the divorce attorney must testify again, but this time without being able to withhold potentially damning revelations that may have cropped up in his communications with Willis' lover on the basis of attorney-client privilege.

McAfee said in an email obtained by CNN, "Based on the in camera hearing with Bradley, the Court believes that the interested parties did not meet their burden of establishing that the communication(s) are covered by attorney-client privilege and therefore the hearing can resume as to Mr. Bradley's examination."

Of particular interest to the defense is the timeline for the affair. A relationship pre-dating Wade's appointment could be seized upon to suggest conflict of interest and more.

Shortly after taking the stand Tuesday afternoon, Bradley acknowledged he had previously asserted in a text message to Ashleigh Merchant, Roman's attorney, that Willis and Wade started their affair prior to November 2021. However, Bradley told the court that he had been "speculating" when confidently making assertions about Willis and Wade's relationship.

Defense attorney Richard Rice suggested to Bradley that "'speculation' is a kind of weaselly lawyer word."

Bradley ostensibly developed selective amnesia during the hearing, indicating he was unable to recall roughly when Willis and Wade starting seeing one another.

"I do not have knowledge of it starting or when it started," said Bradley.

Throughout Tuesday's hearing, CNN indicated Judge McAfee was taking note of when Bradley indicated he could not remember or could not recall information.

Defense attorneys also pressed Bradley Tuesday about responding "looks good" to Merchant's January motion to disqualify Willis — a motion that made note of Bradley's insights into the affair. Bradley suggested his response was in reference to a section in the filing concerning money related to his law firm.

"I think I remember there was a line of, about the accuracy of how much money that my office … had received and whether or not that was going to be in the motion or not," said Bradley.

Defense attorneys underscored that Bradley also failed to flag what he now regards as speculation in the motion as such ahead of its filing.

Hours of questioning Tuesday ostensibly yielded no substantial new insights. However, the defense may already have enough to cast doubt on Willis' preferred timeline.

While Willis confirmed the affair in a Feb. 2 court filing, the filing suggested the "personal relationship between Special Prosecutor Wade and District Attorney Willis has never involved direct or indirect financial benefit to District Attorney Willis" and that "Willis has no personal conflict of interest that justifies her disqualification personally or that of the Fulton County District Attorney' Office."

Included in the Feb. 2 filing was an affidavit from Wade stating the affair did not begin until after his Nov. 1 appointment as special counsel and that they did not begin dating until November 2022. When testifying in court earlier this month, the lovers suggested that their romantic relationship lasted from spring 2022 until summer 2023.

There are some indications, however, that the Democratic DA and the Trump prosecutor may have misled the court.

Blaze News previously reported that Robin Yeartie, a former "good friend" of Willis and Fulton County DA employee, told the court that it was her understanding that Wade and Willis were romantically involved as early as 2019.

When asked whether the relationship was in fact romantic, Yeartie told Trump's attorney Steve Sadow that she observed them "hugging" and "kissing" long before Wade's 2021 appointment.

Beside Yeartie's testimony, there is also apparently a mountain of phone records suggesting Willis and Wade had a closer relationship outside their timeline than they first let on.

Citing data collected from Wade's cellphone, an affidavit submitted Friday by Trump's legal team claimed that Wade visited Willis' home between January and November 2021 at least 35 times, usually in the evening for "an extended period of time." On at least two occasions, Wade allegedly came over to the DA's Hapeville residence late at night then left early in the morning.

Data collected from Wade's cellphone also indicated that he and Willis exchanged over 2,000 phone calls and roughly 10,000 text messages in 2021 prior to his appointment.

Judge McAfee indicated that he will hear arguments Friday and determine whether to reopen evidence and explore the findings concerning the cellphone data.

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Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon is a staff writer for Blaze News. He lives in a small town with his wife and son, moonlighting as an author of science fiction.
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