Donald J. Trump has made changes to his legal defense team in Georgia as he prepares to be booked on 13 felony counts at an Atlanta jail. Steve Sadow, a veteran criminal defense lawyer known for handling high-profile cases, has been added to the team. Sadow filed a statement with the court, declaring himself as the “lead counsel of record for Donald John Trump.” This decision follows negotiations by Trump’s previous lawyers, Drew Findling, Jennifer Little, and Marissa Goldberg, who secured a $200,000 bond for Trump. Findling is expected to be replaced, while Little will remain on the team.
Trump’s dissatisfaction with his legal representation led him to inquire about bringing in a more “sophisticated” team. Sadow, in a statement, asserted that Trump should never have been indicted and claimed his innocence. The shake-up was reported by ABC News.
Supporters of Trump gathered outside the Fulton County Jail in Atlanta, where he is expected to surrender. The indictment against Trump, released last week, is the fourth criminal case filed against him this year. It also targets several of his allies, including Rudolph W. Giuliani and Mark Meadows. As of Thursday morning, nearly half of the 19 defendants had been booked at the jail, and legal maneuvering is underway.
The Fulton County district attorney’s office, led by Fani T. Willis, is prosecuting the case. Arraignments have been requested to take place in the week of September 5. Trump’s legal team is being funded by donations from his supporters, rather than his personal funds.
Steve Sadow, known for his work as a criminal defense lawyer in Atlanta, has represented notable clients such as T.I., Rick Ross, Usher, and Gunna. He was involved in a high-profile case against the Atlanta hip-hop collective Young Slime Life. Sadow was also previously involved in the Gold Club scandal, which had ties to the Gambino crime family.
The ultimate timing of the trial or trials remains uncertain due to ongoing pretrial proceedings. The Georgia secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, and a former chief investigator, Frances Watson, have been subpoenaed to testify in connection with Mark Meadows’s attempt to move the case to federal court.