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Politics Trump Personal Attorney Michael Cohen Splits With His Legal Team

00:00  14 june  2018
00:00  14 june  2018 Source:   bloomberg.com

Little attorney-client privilege seen in Trump lawyer probe

  Little attorney-client privilege seen in Trump lawyer probe An official overseeing the protection of attorney-client privilege after New York raids targeting President Donald Trump's personal lawyer says a small fraction of 1 percent of the first batch of items to be analyzed is subject to the privilege. Court-appointed special master Barbara Jones said in a report Monday the analysis so far covers eight boxes of hard documents, two phones and an iPad. More than 15 electronic devices were seized.

President Donald Trump 's personal attorney , Michael Cohen , has split with the legal team that has shepherded him through a criminal investigation that included a high-profile FBI raid, a source familiar with the change said Wednesday.

The legal battle over federal investigators' raids on President Donald Trump 's personal lawyer Michael Cohen took an unexpected turn Monday as an attorney identified Fox News host Sean Hannity as one of Cohen 's legal clients.

FILE: Michael Cohen walks down the sidewalk in New York, Wednesday, April 11, 2018. © AP Photo/Seth Wenig FILE: Michael Cohen walks down the sidewalk in New York, Wednesday, April 11, 2018.

(Bloomberg) -- Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s longtime personal attorney and fixer, is parting ways with his legal team as federal prosecutors in New York pursue a criminal investigation of him, according to a person familiar with the case.

Under deep financial pressure, Cohen plans to hire a new lawyer for the next phase of the probe, the person said. Cohen’s move to switch lawyers was interpreted by some legal observers as a sign he may seek to cooperate with federal prosecutors. But he could have other motives -- it’s unclear, for example, how Cohen plans to fund his expensive legal defense.

Trump loses bid for total secrecy for Cohen probe documents

  Trump loses bid for total secrecy for Cohen probe documents A federal judge said U.S. President Donald Trump should publicly file his objections to findings of a court-appointed special master reviewing documents seized in a probe of the business dealings of his longtime personal lawyer, Michael Cohen.In an order issued on Friday, U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood in Manhattan rejected efforts by Trump, the Trump Organization and Cohen to file their objections entirely under seal.

Target: Trump attorney Michael Cohen , who was not in court, is under active criminal investigation 'largely' over his personal business dealings - and the allegations are of fraud and lack of truthfulness, federal prosecutors revealed Friday.

That could change soon: Multiple attorneys have offered to help with the president’s defense in the wake of last week’s FBI raid of longtime Trump personal lawyer Michael Cohen , sources familiar with the matter say, and new lawyers could assume senior positions on his team as soon as this week.

Cohen and his lawyers didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Cohen has a decade-long view into Trump’s business, including proposed deals in Moscow and the former Soviet Union, as well as his presidential campaign. He’s arranged hush-money payments to women alleging they’d had affairs with Trump. He traded on his Trump connection to take in millions of dollars from global companies and a fund linked to a wealthy Russian.

‘Annoyance’ or ‘Devastating’

Cohen’s decision to change lawyers, reported earlier by ABC News, is “very significant” but the impact on Trump depends on what he knows and whether he cooperates, said former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti.

“Even if he cooperates, the question is what does he know and what is he going to tell prosecutors?” Mariotti said. “It’s never a good thing when your lawyer flips. But we don’t know how bad it will be for the president. It will either be an annoyance or devastating.”

Trump attorney Michael Cohen has been telling friends he expects to be arrested shortly

  Trump attorney Michael Cohen has been telling friends he expects to be arrested shortly Michael Cohen thinks he might soon swap his pinstripes for jail stripes.NEW YORK — Michael Cohen thinks he might soon swap his pinstripes for jail stripes.

Share Trump ’s legal battle over the seized Michael Cohen documents, explained. Cohen , they say, “is being investigated for criminal conduct that largely centers on his personal business dealings” and “finances.”

Since the raids on his office, apartment, and hotel suite, Michael Cohen has put on a studied show of Trump would then be allowed to assert privilege over those documents, and though the taint team would “ Trump ’s lawyers cite no law, rule, or legal opinion that grants Trump the right to go through

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan will be unlikely to strike a cooperation deal unless Cohen agrees to talk to Mueller as well as both state and federal prosecutors in New York, Mariotti said.

“He’s not going to get a cooperation deal unless he helps them make a case against someone they wouldn’t otherwise get or moves the ball forward significantly against someone else,” he said. “If he gets a deal, he has to say what he knows about everybody, and he has been willing to cooperate with any state or federal prosecutors.”

Cohen’s change of course comes just days before a federal judge in New York is set to wrap up a review of evidence seized when the FBI searched his residences and offices in April. Cohen’s lawyers, Stephen Ryan and Todd Harrison of McDermott, Will & Emery LLP, represented him as a court-appointed special master oversaw which documents should be kept private because of attorney-client privilege.

Michael Cohen under pressure to cooperate with prosecutors

  Michael Cohen under pressure to cooperate with prosecutors An arrest for Cohen is not imminent, a source familiar with the matter tells CBS NewsCBS News correspondent Jeff Pegues, who has been in contact with Cohen, reports there appear to be changes afoot in his legal strategy going forward — on the key question of whether Cohen is ready to cooperate, or whether he will decide to do battle in court. There's no indication yet, that Cohen is in fact preparing to cooperate with the special counsel. But these are his only two real options, as his case plays out in the Southern District of New York.

Trump said that he is represented by many attorneys — “so many attorneys you wouldn't even believe it” — and that Cohen ’s involvement in his legal affairs is Cohen 's decision to plead the Fifth Amendment was "a stunning development," remarked Daniels' attorney , Michael Avenatti.

Longtime Trump personal attorney Michael Cohen appeared in a Manhattan courtroom today in connection with the FBI’s recent raid on his office and hotel room. Stormy Daniels’ lawyer also told outlets that she would be in attendance

Ryan also represented Cohen when he testified to Congress.

Expensive Defense

The special master, retired judge Barbara Jones, reported earlier this month that only 162 of the first 292,000 items she reviewed should be withheld on those grounds. Prosecutors seized as many as 3 million items.

The process has been expensive for Cohen. Judge Kimba Wood said Wednesday that Cohen and the prosecutors’ office would have to split the cost for the special master review. And Cohen has to pay for 15 lawyers and two data specialists who are “working around the clock” to review the material, Harrison said at a hearing last week. They have until Friday to finish, and if they miss the deadline, Wood will give the rest of the seized items to a government “taint team” -- a group of lawyers separate from the prosecution team -- to complete the review.

In April, Cohen and his wife, Laura, put up their Park Avenue apartment as collateral for millions of dollars in troubled loans to their beleaguered taxi business, public filings show. Their lender, Sterling National Bank, earlier this year granted a concession to a debtor facing financial difficulties who owed $12.8 million; the timing matches the issuance of new liens issued by Sterling against the Cohens’ assets.

Cohen sued April 13 to try to block prosecutors from looking at communications protected by attorney-client privilege. Trump and his company, the Trump Organization, quickly joined in the suit.

(Updates with Kimba ruling on special master costs in 12th paragraph.)

--With assistance from Bob Van Voris, Shahien Nasiripour, Christian Berthelsen and Chris Dolmetsch.

To contact the reporters on this story: Shannon Pettypiece in Washington at [email protected];David Voreacos in federal court in Newark, New Jersey, at [email protected]

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Alex Wayne at [email protected], Mike Dorning, Joshua Gallu

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.

Judge OKs small number of privileged items in Cohen case .
A New York judge says the tiny portion of materials seized from President Donald Trump's former personal attorney that were kept from prosecutors mainly pertain to the attorney's communications with other lawyers.Judge Kimba Wood made the disclosure in an order issued Friday in a legal quest by New York attorney Michael Cohen to shield from criminal prosecutors some materials seized from him in April.Prosecutors have said they are scrutinizing his personal business dealings. He has not been charged.

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