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Georgia prosecutor in Trump case fights testifying about relationship

By Andrew Goudsward

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Georgia prosecutor Fani Willis, who is overseeing the election interference case against former President Donald Trump, asked a judge on Wednesday to quash demands she testify about an alleged improper relationship with a lead prosecutor on the case.

Willis, the district attorney of Fulton County, said in a court filing that one of Trump’s co-defendants, Michael Roman, has subpoenaed her, special prosecutor Nathan Wade, and other prosecutors and investigators in her office to testify at a Feb. 15 hearing focused on Willis’ personal relationship with Wade.

Roman and other defendants are seeking to disqualify Willis’ office and dismiss the charges, alleging that Willis benefited financially from her relationship with Wade, who she hired to help run the investigation and prosecution of Trump and his co-defendants.

Willis wrote in a court filing that there is “no factual basis that could reasonably justify requiring opposing counsel and other employees to be a witness in the case.” The filing called the subpoenas an attempt to gather evidence in support of “reckless allegations.”

A lawyer for Roman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Willis admitted in a separate court filing on Friday that she had a “personal relationship” with Wade, but said it began after he was hired as a special prosecutor. Willis and Wade denied any misconduct and rejected claims that their relationship posed a conflict of interest.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee is expected to weigh the requests to disqualify Willis at the Feb. 15 hearing.

Trump and 14 allies have pleaded not guilty to racketeering and other charges as a part of what prosecutors allege was a conspiracy to overturn Trump’s narrow defeat in Georgia following the 2020 election. Four other defendants originally charged in the case have pleaded guilty in deals with prosecutors.

(Reporting by Andrew Goudsward; editing by Tom Hals and Bill Berkrot)