What You Need to Know
As Donald Trump is scheduled to surrender Thursday to authorities in Georgia on charges that he schemed to overturn the 2020 election in that state, he is changing defense attorneys.
Steven Sadow is replacing Drew Findling on Trump’s Georgia legal team, according to multiple news reports.
According to news reports, Sadow said in a statement that Trump “should never have been indicted,” adding, “He is innocent of all the charges brought against him.” He added that “prosecutions intended to advance or serve the ambitions and careers of political opponents of the president have no place in our justice system.”
Sadow is a longtime Atlanta criminal defense attorney who handles high-profile and white-collar on a counsel basis for Schulten Ward Turner & Weiss. Among Sadow’s recent clients have been rapper Gunna who was charged in a racketeering case in Georgia in 2022.
Sadow earlier this year helped represent Christian Fletcher, CEO of Atlanta medical testing company LifeBrite Laboratories, as part of a group accused of having roles in an alleged $1.4 billion drug-testing fraud case. A federal jury acquitted Fletcher in a retrial in Jacksonville, Fla., in March.
Sadow’s clients also have included Baltimore Ravens football legend Ray Lewis, who was found not guilty of murder in a 1999 case following the Super Bowl in Atlanta; and rapper and business mogul Rick Ross, who pleaded no contest to misdemeanors and received probation after facing mandatory life imprisonment on kidnapping and multiple violent felony charges in 2017.
Trump’s presence in Fulton County follows many of his associates. Rudy Giuliani turned himself in Wednesday to the Fulton County Jail to be booked on a variety of charges related to being former President Donald Trump’s chief organizer of an alleged plot to interfere in the 2020 election in Georgia.
Attorney Brian Tevis of The Tevis Law Firm in Atlanta entered the Fulton County Courthouse on Wednesday afternoon to negotiate a bond for Giuliani. The former New York mayor agreed to a bond of $150,000 in the racketeering case, CNN reported.
In a video posted to the X social media platform, previously known as Twitter, Tevis told reporters on his way to the courthouse it “remained to be seen” if he would be representing Giuliani long-term, who reportedly is cash-strapped.
“First we’re going in to negotiate a bond and I’m sure we’ll make those decisions after that,” he told a reporter.
Trump reportedly is scheduled to host a $100,000-a-plate benefit dinner and roundtable discussion with Trump and Giuliani at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, on Sept. 7 to raise funds for the former New York mayor’s legal fees.
Trump and 18 other defendants were charged in an Aug. 14 indictment for alleged interference in Georgia’s 2020 presidential election. Trump agreed to a $200,000 bond Monday while co-defendants and attorneys John Eastman, Sidney Powell (who also turned herself in Wednesday), Jenna Ellis and Kenneth Chesebro each agreed to $100,000 bonds, according to The Associated Press.
The 41-count indictment in Fulton County Superior Court names Trump and some of his former attorneys, including Giuliani and Eastman, as well as some national and Georgia supporters of the former president, a sitting state senator and some former local election and Republican Party officials.
Those indicted included Trump; Giuliani; Eastman; former Chief of Staff Mark Meadows; former Georgia GOP leader David Shafer; State Sen. Shawn Still; pro-Trump attorneys Robert Cheeley and Chesebro; former Coffee County GOP official Cathy Latham; former Coffee County elections director Misty Hampton; Trump campaign official Michael Roman; Atlanta bail bondsman Scott Graham Hall; and former Trump campaign attorneys Ray Smith III, Ellis and Powell.
Others include Harrison “Willie” Floyd, head of Black Voices for Trump, as well as Trevian Kutti, a publicist, and Illinois pastor Stephen Lee, both tied to an alleged intimidation effort of an election official. All the defendants were required to turn themselves in by Friday.
As the Daily Report earlier reported, defense lawyers for Trump and the 18 other defendants charged in the indictment range from a small-town defense lawyer to current and former Am Law 200 partners.
More defense attorney names have surfaced in the last two days.