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Politics Giuliani case: Prosecutors seek 'special master' to review items FBI seized

05:15  05 may  2021
05:15  05 may  2021 Source:   cnn.com

Meet Victoria Toensing and Joseph diGenova, the Republican power couple caught up in the FBI's Rudy Giuliani investigation

  Meet Victoria Toensing and Joseph diGenova, the Republican power couple caught up in the FBI's Rudy Giuliani investigation Toensing and diGenova have been Republican fixtures for decades and were instrumental in the Ukraine scandal that led to Trump's first impeachment.That same morning, at 6:30 a.m., FBI agents showed up to the Washington, DC-area home of Victoria Toensing to execute a search warrant, taking one of her cell phones, a person familiar with the events told Insider.

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan have asked a judge to appoint a " special master " -- or independent review -- for materials seized when the FBI executed search warrants on Rudy Giuliani 's home and office last week.

Federal prosecutors are seeking to submit the vast trove of information the FBI seized from former President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani to a court-appointed special master for review before any records are turned over to investigators, according to a person familiar with the matter and a It was not immediately clear who would pay for a special master in the Giuliani case or whether Trump would participate through his attorneys . A spokesperson for Trump, Jason Miller, did not respond to a request for comment. Ultimately, more than 4 million items were reviewed stemming from the Cohen

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan have asked a judge to appoint a "special master" -- or independent review -- for materials seized when the FBI executed search warrants on Rudy Giuliani's home and office last week.

Rudy Giuliani wearing a suit and tie: WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 01: President Donald Trump's lawyer and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani talks to journalists outside the White House West Wing July 01, 2020 in Washington, DC. Giuliani did an on-camera interview with One America News Network's Chanel Rion before talking to other journalists about Vice President Joe Biden and the news that Russian intelligence may have paid Taliban operatives to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) © Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 01: President Donald Trump's lawyer and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani talks to journalists outside the White House West Wing July 01, 2020 in Washington, DC. Giuliani did an on-camera interview with One America News Network's Chanel Rion before talking to other journalists about Vice President Joe Biden and the news that Russian intelligence may have paid Taliban operatives to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Calling it a step that would be appropriate to ensure attorney-client privilege is protected, prosecutors filed the request under seal last Thursday, the day after the searches were conducted. The letter was unsealed Tuesday.

FBI 'warned Rudy Giuliani he was target of Russia plot to smear Biden'

  FBI 'warned Rudy Giuliani he was target of Russia plot to smear Biden' Multiple sources said Giuliani was warned about Russia's attempts to potentially use him to push false claims to smear Joe Biden during the White House race. At the time, Giuliani was a key figure in Trump's reelection campaign and was seeking to unearth damaging information about Biden and his son Hunter over their dealings in Ukraine. But, despite the warning, Giuliani plowed ahead with a trip to Ukraine that December where he met with a Ukrainian lawmaker who the US government later said was 'an active Russian agent' who had ran an 'influence campaign' to sway the outcome of the election.

A special master is typically a respected lawyer, like a retired judge, given the responsibility of reviewing evidence and making recommendations about how it should be handled. The process is intended to protect the confidentiality of discussions between lawyers and their clients for the legitimate purpose of FBI agents seized more than 10 cellphones and computers from Giuliani ’s Manhattan apartment and office in raids on Wednesday, according to Costello, who read the search warrant to a Reuters reporter. U.S. investigators are seeking to review Giuliani ’s phones and computers for

A special master is typically a respected lawyer, like a retired judge, given the responsibility of reviewing evidence and making recommendations about how it should be handled. The process is intended to protect the confidentiality of discussions between lawyers and their clients for the legitimate purpose of FBI agents seized more than 10 cellphones and computers from Giuliani ’s Manhattan apartment and office in raids on Wednesday, according to Costello, who read the search warrant to a Reuters reporter. U.S. investigators are seeking to review Giuliani ’s phones and computers for

The filing from prosecutors said they had consulted with Giuliani's counsel and that he would file a response.

Giuliani's attorney, Robert Costello, had indicated shortly after the searches that he intended to pursue a court challenge to protect potential privilege issues concerning Giuliani's clients, who previously included former President Donald Trump.

The former New York City mayor has been the focus of an investigation concerning his activities in Ukraine, including whether he conducted illegal lobbying for Ukrainian officials while he pursued an investigation linked to Trump's primary political rival, President Joe Biden, CNN has reported. He hasn't been charged and has denied wrongdoing.

After federal agents executed the search warrants last week at Giuliani's Manhattan apartment and office, Costello said the warrant described an investigation into possible violation of foreign lobbying laws and that it sought communications between Giuliani and people who included a former columnist for The Hill, John Solomon.

How 'America's Mayor' Rudy Giuliani could face criminal charges from the office he once led

  How 'America's Mayor' Rudy Giuliani could face criminal charges from the office he once led Rudy Giuliani used to lead the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York. Now, he might be prosecuted by it.The feds on Wednesday executed search warrants on Rudy Giuliani's home and office and seized his electronic devices. Agents also seized a computer belonging to his personal assistant, Jo Ann Zafonte, served Zafonte with a grand jury subpoena, and raided the Washington, DC, home of Giuliani's associate Victoria Toensing.

Federal agents on Wednesday seized electronic devices from Giuliani , who has previously served as a personal attorney to former President Trump, as part of an ongoing Justice Department investigation . Investigators are reportedly investigating claims that Giuliani pushed to oust Yovanovitch as ambassador on behalf of Ukrainian government officials, in exchange for information on Biden family business dealings in Ukraine. If true, Giuliani would have violated federal lobbying laws.

Prosecutors say they properly seized electronic items that a Florida man tried to send to his lawyers after he was charged with conspiring with associates of Rudy Giuliani to make illegal campaign contributions. So far, only special prosecutors not working on the criminal case have looked at the materials to screen out materials they believe are subject to attorney -client privilege. Prosecutors say they will not look at the evidence until the judge rules. Prosecutors said Correia was involved in a scheme to make illegal campaign donations to local and federal politicians in New York, Nevada and

On Monday, lawyer Alan Dershowitz, who is not formally representing Giuliani but acting in an advisory capacity, said Giuliani will likely file a court challenge and wants his former clients to also seek to prevent prosecutors from examining the material.

"Hope the people whose information is privileged, like Donald Trump, would join the lawsuit and say look you can't see my stuff," Dershowitz, a retired Harvard Law School professor who served on the then-President's defense team in the first impeachment trial and whose career has mostly been focused on individual civil liberties, told CNN.

Costello told CNN on Monday night that Giuliani's legal team is set to expand with additional attorneys as the former New York mayor prepares for a legal fight, but that there had not been coordination between Giuliani and Trump's legal team.

A second court document set a briefing schedule that gives Giuliani until May 10 to respond to the prosecutors' filing.

Rudy Giuliani expected to wage court fight over files seized in federal raid .
With federal authorities now in possession of Rudy Giuliani's electronic devices as a result of search warrants executed on his Manhattan residence and office Wednesday, federal officials anticipate a court fight over their potentially privileged contents. © BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images Attorney for the President, Rudy Giuliani, speaks at a news conference in the parking lot of a landscaping company on November 7, 2020 in Philadelphia.

usr: 1
This is interesting!