Appeals Court Agrees to Expedite Appeal of Prosecutor Fired by Florida Gov. DeSantis Because of Opposition to Abortion Ban

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By Roni Ayalon

TAMPA FL – The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to speed up a review of Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren’s appeal in his federal lawsuit against Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

According to a statement by Warren, a federal court ruled DeSantis violated the First Amendment as well as Florida law by removing the elected prosecutor from his position. But the judge lacked the authority to rule after the trial.

According to previous coverage by the Vanguard, DeSantis removed the prosecutor because of Warren’s “stance and statements against Florida’s new abortion ban and ‘proposed legislation to criminalize gender-affirming care.’”

According to the statement from Warren’s office, these were “politically motivated reasons” and were ruled by the judge as not being based on “a hint of misconduct” by Warren.

In a more recent development from March 8, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled it would “expedite its review of Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren’s appeal in his federal lawsuit against Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.”

Warren requested the case be handled quickly because, as his legal team stated, “the public needs resolution at the earliest possible opportunity of whether the governor illegally removed the duly elected prosecutor in the state’s third most populous city.”

Although the federal court had previously ruled against DeSantis, the judge “stated he did not have the authority to reinstate Warren.” Since Warren’s suspension on Aug. 4, 2022, he has not been able to serve in his role.

Warren has said he and his team are “look[ing] forward to our next day in court to continue fighting for free speech, democracy, and the rule of law.”

The Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments to decide the case the week of May 1 in Montgomery, Alabama.

“Warren is also petitioning the Florida Supreme Court for reinstatement through a separate lawsuit,” he said.

About The Author

The Vanguard Court Watch operates in Yolo, Sacramento and Sacramento Counties with a mission to monitor and report on court cases. Anyone interested in interning at the Courthouse or volunteering to monitor cases should contact the Vanguard at info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org - please email info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org if you find inaccuracies in this report.

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