Donald Trump Announces New Impeachment Legal Team, Including Lawyer With Ties to Jeffrey Epstein

A day after it was revealed he parted ways with several attorneys with just over a week to go before his Senate trial, former President Donald Trump on Sunday announced a new impeachment legal defense team. Defense lawyer David Schoen, who has ties to Jeffrey Epstein, and former district attorney Bruce Castor, who faced widespread criticism for his decision to not charge actor Bill Cosby in a sex crimes case, were confirmed over the weekend to be the two leading the former president's defense against charges of incitement of insurrection for the deadly Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

Schoen has made numerous Fox News appearances over the years and is a veteran trial attorney who has represented federal criminal defendants, including Trump's associate Roger Stone. He recently made headlines after he told the Atlanta Jewish Times he spoke with Jeffrey Epstein just days before his death in prison. Castor, meanwhile, served as the Republican district attorney of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania from 2002 until 2008, according to the Daily Beast. It was during this time that he made the decision not to prosecute Cosby when Andrea Constand first accused the comedian of sexual assault. Announcing Schoen and Castor's selection to represent him, Trump said the two lawyers will bring "national profiles and significant trial experience in high-profile cases to the effort." The statement added that both lawyers believe the case against the former president is unconstitutional.

In a statement, Schoen called it an "honor to represent the 45th President, Donald J. Trump, and the United States Constitution." Castor said he considers "it a privilege" to represent Trump, adding, "the strength of our Constitution is about to be tested like never before in our history. A document written for the ages, and it will triumph over partisanship yet again, and always."

The news comes after reports surfaced Saturday night that five impeachment defense attorneys left Trump's impeachment trial team. Trump adviser Jason Miller confirmed Saturday that South Carolina attorney Butch Bowers and Deborah Barbier were no longer part of Trump's team. CNN, which was the first to report the news, cited a source familiar with the matter who alleged Trump wanted the attorneys to argue there was mass election fraud and the election was stolen, despite there being no evidence.

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On Jan. 14, the House of Representatives in a vote of 232 to 197 voted to impeach the president on a single article of impeachment, incitement of insurrection, for his hand in the Capitol riot. Trump's Senate trial is scheduled to start the week of Feb. 8. A two-thirds majority is needed to convict him, though 45 senators have since voted that the trial would be unconstitutional, meaning a conviction is unlikely.