Atlanta: Donald Trump Hires New Lead Lawyer

Donald Trump has shaken up his legal team, hiring one of the best trial lawyers in Georgia to be his lead lawyer.

Steven Sadow is absolutely top-notch. This case is also right up his alley.

I haven't spoken to Trump's former lawyer, Drew Findling, in a long time, but I hope he feels relieved. Drew gives his all to his clients, the famous the not-so-famous, and and to NACDL. After 30 plus years, he still has fun at work every day and despite his famous clients, he is still down-to-earth...no pretense, just a neighborhood-kind of guy. [More...]

That said, for Drew's sake, I am glad he is out of this case. Any case where you can't call the shots because some Trump legal advisor is acting as an intermediary on major strategic decisions is going to be a headache. I think most of Drew's rapper clients will be delighted and relieved that he won't be unavailable for the next year or two.

If I were Drew, I would take a chunk of the money Trump paid him right to Icebox, and buy a great, chunky piece of jewelry so he always remember the clients who made him the "billionaire lawyer", and then go home and count his lucky stars he's out of the swirling washing machine tossing around Donald Trump's dirty laundry.

As for Steven Sadow, like I said, this case is right up his alley and he's more than up to the task. Another great Georgia lawyer I've known over the years is representing a co-defendant: Don Samuel, (partner of Ed Garland, Georgia's legendary defense lawyer in my view). One thing is for sure: Georgia has many great criminal defense lawyers, each unique in their style, and Trump is lucky to have had two of them (so far).

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    ... but his client is driving straight down that cul-de-sac at 90 mph and is still accelerating.

    Every defendant deserves a fair trial and competent legal counsel. However, not every legal counsel gets a competent defendant to take to trial.

    Sadow and Drew Findling clearly have their work cut out for them.


    Findling (none / 0) (#2)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Aug 25, 2023 at 05:47:11 AM EST
    Isn't repping Trump anymore. He is probably relieved.

    "He Really Believed It" Defense (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by RickyJim on Mon Aug 28, 2023 at 07:23:13 PM EST
    From a Guest Essay by Burt Neuborne:
    The answer lies in the Supreme Court's doctrine of willful blindness. A dozen years ago, in the case of Global-Tech Appliances v. SEB, Justice Samuel Alito, writing for all but one justice, ruled that proof of willful blindness is the legal equivalent of proving guilty knowledge.

    As Justice Alito explained it, "Many criminal statutes require proof that a defendant acted knowingly or willfully, and courts applying the doctrine of willful blindness hold that defendants cannot escape the reach of these statutes by deliberately shielding themselves from clear evidence of critical facts that are strongly suggested by the circumstances."

    In other words, when a defendant, like Mr. Trump, is on notice of the potential likelihood of an inconvenient fact (Mr. Biden's legitimate victory) and closes his eyes to overwhelming evidence of that fact, the willfully blind defendant is just as guilty as if he actually knew the fact. While this argument is not a slam dunk, there's an excellent chance that 12 jurors will find, beyond a reasonable doubt, that Mr. Trump hid from the truth by adopting willful blindness.

    yes, completely correct (5.00 / 2) (#15)
    by Peter G on Mon Aug 28, 2023 at 07:48:42 PM EST
    I thought I had written about this principle here earlier, but apparently I did not (or at least I cannot find it). And recognition of the "willful blindness" rule goes back much more than a dozen years, and did not originate with Alito. Perhaps that is the most recent mention of it in a Supreme Court case.

    In 1899, for example, the Supreme Court (none / 0) (#17)
    by Peter G on Tue Aug 29, 2023 at 08:52:47 PM EST
    wrote, in a 7-2 decision authored by the Chief Justice: "The wrongful intent is the essence of the crime. If an officer certifies a check with the intent that the drawer shall obtain so much money out of the bank, when he has none there, such officer not only certifies unlawfully, but the specific intent to violate the statute may be imputed. And so evil design may be presumed if the officer purposely keeps himself in ignorance of whether the drawer has money in the bank or not, or is grossly indifferent to his duty in respect to the ascertainment of that fact."

    Now our electricity is out. (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by fishcamp on Tue Sep 05, 2023 at 07:22:26 AM EST
    Fortunately I have a 2000 kw Honda generator to keep the fridge running, but all my devices are getting low.  An electrician is supposed to come today.  Bummer...

    "If I were Drew, I would take a chunk" (none / 0) (#3)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Aug 25, 2023 at 10:24:35 AM EST
    If I were Drew, I would take a chunk of the money Trump paid him

    Isn't Trump rather famous for literally not paying his bills?

    If Mr Findling is as smart as everyone says (none / 0) (#4)
    by vml68 on Fri Aug 25, 2023 at 10:34:52 AM EST
    he is, he most likely asked for his money up front.

    I am pretty confident that Drew did not (none / 0) (#5)
    by Peter G on Fri Aug 25, 2023 at 11:02:40 AM EST
    enter the case without a prepaid retainer in the hundreds of thousands, probably specified as non-refundable unless he were to be discharged for misconduct or negligence.  If so, he has definitely come out ahead in every way. And very glad to hear that Don Samuel has a co-defendant. I love Don; great guy and super-excellent lawyer.

    That would be wise. (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Aug 25, 2023 at 01:00:01 PM EST
    I think you'll appreciate this. (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Sep 04, 2023 at 11:29:33 PM EST
    Overheard from Andrew Fleischman at the electric X-Twitter machine on the intertubes:

    "Truly there has never been a more enjoyable period of criminal defense gossip in my lifetime. Everybody's talking about who's got one of the RICO codefendants, how much they were paid, and then speculating about the misery of the employment."



    Thats' the (none / 0) (#7)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Aug 25, 2023 at 02:45:32 PM EST
    rep Drew has around town that you had better have some serious cash up front.

    Good (none / 0) (#8)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Aug 26, 2023 at 03:54:33 PM EST

    Attorney John Eastman, an architect of Donald Trump's last-ditch bid to subvert the 2020 election, may not postpone his ongoing disbarment hearings just because he's been indicted in Georgia, a California judge ruled Friday.

    One of Eastman's attorneys is (none / 0) (#9)
    by Peter G on Sat Aug 26, 2023 at 04:43:48 PM EST
    Harvey Silverglate, a former criminal defense lawyer turned hard-core civil liberties advocate from Boston. He co-authored a book with Sidney Powell, published in early 2020, on federal prosecutorial abuses. A very interesting, smart iconoclast, and no conservative.

    Not surprised he has good lawyers (none / 0) (#10)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Aug 26, 2023 at 04:57:30 PM EST
    I guess he used to be one himself.  You just wonder what happens to these people.

    What he did was nuts. I know it's nuts and I'm not a lawyer.  And I don't think he will be for much longer.


    Personally, I find it absolutely incredible that so many high-caliber professionals drank the Kool-Aid and threw away their lives with both hands, and for what, exactly - Donald Phuquing Trump?

    The utter absurdity of it all is worthy of a Fellini film.


    They all went along (none / 0) (#19)
    by jondee on Wed Aug 30, 2023 at 05:22:46 PM EST
    like Trump was Colonel Kurtz and they'd all fallen under his spell, right down the line..

    And lets not forget the other dipsh*ts who should've known better, like Pompeo and Navarro. The mystique of Ivy League educations ain't what it used to be.

    It really, truly is mind-boggling.


    I don't (none / 0) (#20)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Aug 31, 2023 at 08:36:27 AM EST
    know where you get Navarro in there. Seems like he's always had the reputation of being a nut.

    I guess I was (none / 0) (#21)
    by jondee on Thu Aug 31, 2023 at 03:54:21 PM EST
    giving him a little bit of a benefit of a doubt.

    Didn't he at one point have a full professorship somewhere?


    Can You Give US Some Insight, Peter? (none / 0) (#11)
    by RickyJim on Sat Aug 26, 2023 at 05:32:37 PM EST
    What gave all these lawyers the idea that their scheme might work and that they were not in much danger by engaging in it?  Even if they got Pence to go along, they must have realized the efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election would eventually fail.  Even Eastman admitted to White House lawyer Eric Herschmann (IIRC) that it would fail in the Supreme Court 9-0.

    They may not have contemplated that (5.00 / 3) (#12)
    by Peter G on Sat Aug 26, 2023 at 06:39:10 PM EST
    their crackpot schemes could be fairly characterized as criminal, rather than just being the sort of hail-Mary longshot arguments lawyers are used to thinking up and putting out there when under pressure from a demanding client who wants to go down fighting. The critical point, which makes all the difference -- that the underlying premise of the arguments was, from a factual POV, just a lie, and that the theories therefore depended on making false statements in official proceedings -- seems to have escaped them.

    They knew the documents were forged (5.00 / 3) (#13)
    by Repack Rider on Sat Aug 26, 2023 at 10:57:43 PM EST
    ...And they had the notation "...under penalty of perjury."

    They signed them anyway.


    Original Grand Jury Report on Sept 8? (none / 0) (#16)
    by RickyJim on Tue Aug 29, 2023 at 08:25:46 PM EST
    Link.  I have a hunch someone will object.  I hope this time the grand jurors' names will be redacted.

    Chesebro (none / 0) (#22)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Aug 31, 2023 at 05:12:18 PM EST
    and his attorney want the names of all the unindicted coconspirators released. Is this usual in a RICO case? Chesebro is saying they need to be released because he needs to know who said or did what. It would seem that it could be figured out without releasing their names.

    Not unusual for a defendant to ask (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by Peter G on Thu Aug 31, 2023 at 07:03:14 PM EST
    for that, by way of a "bill of particulars." If shown to be necessary to prepare a defense, the judge will often grant it. Not necessarily.

    So no impeachment then. Good. (none / 0) (#24)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Sep 01, 2023 at 04:24:54 PM EST
    This is worth noting (none / 0) (#25)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Sep 01, 2023 at 05:16:30 PM EST
    With the political backdrop for this shi+ show you just have to admit this is not only a good thing but its bold but smart.  

    Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp rejected calls from GOP state lawmakers for a special legislative session to impeach Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis

    With so (none / 0) (#26)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Sep 01, 2023 at 08:55:56 PM EST
    many Trumpers here in ga this has set off a civil war and they are shooting at each other full blast calling each other names. Couldn't happen to a better group of people.

    But wait (none / 0) (#27)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Sep 02, 2023 at 01:27:05 PM EST

    What happened next is so funny and ironic that you may need to sit down, assuming you didn't already collapse in a heap of jiggling protoplasm when you read about an elected Republican actually defending the rule of law and separation of powers in the Year of Our Mord 2023.

    In the wake of Kemp's latest outrage, professional rat-fvcker Roger Stone, a longtime Trump confederate and consumer of bad fashion, claimed that Kemp is an illegitimate governor whose law-following is just a cloak to cover up his own electoral malfeasance.



    How Roger Stone (none / 0) (#28)
    by jondee on Sat Sep 02, 2023 at 02:44:22 PM EST
    has managed so far to slither just beyond reach of the long arm of justice is another mystery that passeth all understanding.

    Maybe it's because he's so kinky, they're worried he'd actually enjoy jail a little too much.


    Someone (none / 0) (#29)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Sep 02, 2023 at 04:13:15 PM EST
    would definitely want that Nixon tattoo as a lamp shade.  

    I'm waiting (none / 0) (#31)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Sep 02, 2023 at 04:22:05 PM EST
    for him to get indicted. It might be fruitless but I'm still waiting due to his association with the proud boys.

    The fact taht Roger Stone has been able to crime for literally decades is nothing short of a failure.


    He actuall (none / 0) (#30)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Sep 02, 2023 at 04:20:58 PM EST
    did pull a bunch of garbage as SOS. He was one of the worst in the nation. However Stacy took some of it to court and didn't win.