The Department of Justice is contemplating barring the lawyer defending Walt Nauta, the ex-president’s alleged Mar-a-Lago conspirator. Since the attorney represents many witnesses in the inquiry, the DOJ is concerned about the appearance of a conflict of interest.
The DOJ said on Wednesday that Stanley Woodward had represented at least seven additional people who have been questioned in connection with the inquiry, including witnesses regarding Nauta. The department has requested a Garcia hearing with Woodward’s clients so they may know the dangers and exemptions that can be explored. If the court feels Woodward isn’t adequately representing Nauta, it may appoint an impartial lawyer to evaluate the situation.
Nauta must be fully informed of the dangers and disputes that might arise. According to the DOJ, additional persons who have testified regarding Nauta, including Witness 1 and Witness 2, should be present at the hearing and told of the danger of Mr. Woodward utilizing or exposing the confidence he gained from them.
The DOJ also wants the court to determine whether or not Nauta understands the dangers associated with his current attorney. It suggests the Court inquire into whether Nauta’s waiver of conflicts is knowing and voluntary before deciding whether to accept it if he desires to do so.
The petition is predicated on rumors that Trump would financially back any friends who get in trouble for being associated with him in court. It also discusses how Yuscil Taveras decided to switch attorneys, leaving Woodward as their only advocate. The investigation’s original target letter was sent to Taveras, the man in charge of the security cameras at Mar-a-Lago. Taveras first refused to assist, but after hiring new legal representation, he eventually admitted to Trump’s involvement in an attempt to destroy Mar-a-Lago surveillance recordings.
The indictment also names Carlos De Oliveira, who was identified with help from Taveras. The property manager at Mar-a-Lago, De Oliveira, helped Nauta move boxes and attempted to erase the film.
Despite the filing, Woodward has chosen to remain silent on the topic.
The Department of Justice reports that Mr. Woodward does not protest when the Court inquires about prospective waivers or informs his client of their rights. But he needs time to consider his response and analyze the motion beforehand.