Sean Hannity and Michael Cohen can't keep their stories straight
10:42, Apr 17, 2018
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As a first step, the judge said the Government should put the documents in a searchable database to determine which should come under review.
Wood then demanded that Ryan reveal the client's name. Denying an objection by Hendon, the judge ruled federal investigators could obtain the statistical data without examining the underlying content.
Cohen quickly entered the national spotlight when it was reported that Trump allegedly attempted to keep adult film star Stormy Daniels from talking about her affair with the president and the lawyer brokered the deal between the two. The third person remained unnamed - at least until Judge Wood forced Mr. Cohen's lawyers to identify him as Mr. Hannity before a packed courtroom.
Cohen has worked as Trump's private attorney for more than a decade and is seen as a "street-wise New Yorker with a penchant for confrontation" who works as Trump's fixer, according to ABC News.
With Mr Cohen by their side, lawyers initially resisted revealing the name of the third client for privacy reasons. "You could have said that you had asked him for advice or whatever, but I think it would have been much, much better had you disclosed that relationship".
"In terms of perception of fairness - not fairness itself, but perception of fairness - a special master might have a role here", Wood said.
"I understand he doesn't want his name out there", Judge Kimba Wood said. Hannity said. "I had it on the tip of my tongue".
"I've known Michael a long, long time". They never involved any matter ― any matter ― between me, a third party, a third group at all. I never retained him in the traditional sense as retaining a lawyer. Unfortunately, the conflict of interest appears to have never crossed the host's mind, as Hannity pushed his own theory regarding Cohen to the public without thinking twice.
"But I have occasionally had brief discussions with him about legal questions about which I wanted his input and perspective", he added.
Hannity, an outspoken supporter of Trump, has been a fierce critic of special counsel Robert Mueller, who is looking into Russian interference in the 2016 USA presidential election.
The Cohen raid, conducted by Federal Bureau of Investigation agents with a search warrant a week ago, sought evidence of those payments, which could violate laws on bank fraud and campaign contributions. Sometimes Trump praises Hannity in return. "I don't know what the full thing was that actually went on there". "All lawyers are deflated and concerned!"
"They describe the documents as thousands, if not millions, of pages of documents subject to the attorney-client privilege, including audio recordings", said Avenatti, concluding, "this is going to get very, very bad for Michael Cohen".
The judge also denied Mr Cohen's attempts to prevent prosecutors from reviewing the materials seized in the Federal Bureau of Investigation raids. She ordered him to say it aloud.
Whether formal or informal, the apparent legal relationship between Cohen and Hannity raises obvious issues. Cohen was in court with his own lawyer earlier in the day. "Such a rule is unworkable and ripe for abuse", wrote Robert Khuzami, deputy U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of NY.
In a court filing Sunday night, lawyers for Trump asked to be allowed to review documents that in any way relate to the president. "He is radioactive", Avenatti reiterated.
Cohen has said he paid the $130,000 to Daniels himself, was not reimbursed by Trump, and never even told Trump what he'd done.
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Outside court, he said: "We have every reason to believe that some of the documents seized relate to my client". Sources who've seen the warrants say it appeared to them that the real target of the raids was President Trump.
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