The deposition of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has been put on pause in the divorce proceedings of her lead prosecutor in the Georgia election subversion case, a judge decided Monday.
Willis’ testimony is being sought by the wife of special prosecutor Nathan Wade, who was hired by Willis several years ago to pursue the criminal case against former President Donald Trump and his allies over efforts to overturn the 2020 election.
Allegations of an improper romantic relationship between Willis and Wade first came to light in the Trump case as part of an effort to get that case dismissed. The alleged affair also has been raised in Wade’s divorce from Joycelyn Wade, who is seeking more information about Nathan Wade’s finances.
Judge Henry Thompson said during the hearing in Cobb County Superior Court on Monday that “it seems to me that Mr. Wade would be the first and best source of what his income has been and how he’s been spending it, and that he would have firsthand knowledge of whether he is engaged in an extramarital affair.”
“Only after I hear what Mr. Wade has to say do think I can make a determination of whether the proposed opponent has any unique knowledge about these issues,” Thompson said of Willis’ potential testimony.
In a court filing Friday, Joycelyn Wade included credit card statements showing Nathan Wade purchased airline tickets for Willis to accompany him on trips to Miami and San Francisco in recent years.
For her part, Willis has suggested in court filings that Joycelyn Wade is using the divorce proceedings to harass the district attorney and damage her reputation and is “obstructing and interfering with an ongoing criminal prosecution.”
On Monday, Joycelyn Wade’s attorneys pushed the judge to order Willis to testify, saying the district attorney “is trying to hide under the shield of her position” to avoiding sitting for a deposition that had been set for Tuesday in the divorce case.
“We’re not seeking her deposition as the district attorney of Fulton County,” Joycelyn Wade’s attorney Andrea Dyer Hastings said. “We’re seeking her deposition in her individual capacity as the alleged paramour of my client’s husband.”
Thompson also ruled Monday that records in the divorce proceedings should be unsealed, noting that court rules require a hearing before sealing such records and that such a hearing never took place.
The judge said he’d put in a written order regarding the unsealing later Monday.
The controversy surrounding the alleged affair between Willis and Nathan Wade has led to the circulation of a comment Willis made in 2020, when she told a local public access station that it would be “inappropriate for the No. 1 law enforcement officer in the state” to have a relationship with an employee. She added that she would not date people “that work under me” and reposted clips from the interview on her Facebook page in April of that year.
Willis’ office has not responded to multiple CNN requests for comment about the video.
CNN’s Zachary Cohen contributed to this report.
This story has been updated with additional information.
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