David Schoen is one of the new names on former President Donald Trump's new impeachment legal team. The announcement comes just days after five members of his initial impeachment legal team quit over a disagreement on strategy. Interestingly, Schoen is the same lawyer who met with disgraced businessman and pedophile Jeffrey Epstein about representing him before his death.
With just over a week left for the impeachment trial, Schoen's name in the new legal team certainly has raised a few eyebrows. The other name announced by Trump on Sunday as part of his legal team is Bruce Castor Jr.
Schoen is no doubt one of the most controversial names in Trump's new impeachment legal team given that he had also met the disgraced Epstein before his death. Based in Atlanta, Georgia and with offices in New York and Alabama, he was readying to defend Epstein when the New York financier was found dead in his cell in August 2019. Schoen was the one who insisted that Epstein's death was not suicide.
Schoen was also a part of Trump ally Roger Stone's defense team during his trial for witness tampering, obstructing an official proceeding, and making false statements in relation to Robert Mueller's Russia investigation. "It is an honor to represent the 45th President, Donald Trump, and the United States Constitution," Schoen, who was already helping Mr Trump prepare for the Senate trial, said in a statement.
Schoen has an interesting list of clients that also includes underworld figures. "I represented all sorts of reputed mobster figures: alleged head of Russian mafia in this country, Israeli mafia and two Italian bosses, as well a guy the government claimed was the biggest mafioso in the world."
Schoen's association with Epstein goes back a long time. On an interview to The Atlanta Jewish Times, Schoen told that he became acquainted with Epstein about 11 years ago, when the financier sought his advice. "Periodically, over the years, he's asked me a question or two. Over the past year, increasingly over the past six months, he turned to me for advice," Schoen had said during that interview, adding that Epstein wanted to be billed for that service, but he declined because, he "wasn't sure where the relationship was going."
Schoen and Castor's inclusion in the legal team comes a day after it was reported that five members of the president's impeachment team had left. Castor is the former district attorney of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, which is just outside Philadelphia. While in office between 2000 and 2008, Castor famously declined to prosecute comedian Bill Cosby over allegations he drugged and molested a girl in 2004.
Trump's announcement followed reports that he has severed ties with his lead impeachment lawyers just over a week before the trial is set to begin, after the president insisted they argue that the election was stolen from him.