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Michael Cohen lawyers say they finished seized document review

President Donald Trump's longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen

President Donald Trump's longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen leaves a federal courthouse on May 30. Credit: Charles Eckert

Lawyers for President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen said in a court filing on Monday that they have finished reviewing more than 4 million files seized in an April raid on his office and are claiming 12,061 are protected by attorney-client privilege.

The privilege claims are being reviewed by Barbara Jones, a special master named by Manhattan U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood after Cohen sued to keep the government from looking at privileged materials following the raid.

Cohen’s law firm said the files — seized from his office, home, hotel room and safe deposit box — included items from 13 different mobile devices and iPads, hard copy documents, and 20 computer hard drives, flash drives and laptops.

The lawyers said some of the devices belong to Cohen’s wife or children, and contain only family videos and highly personal materials, which they are seeking to exclude from government review.

Trump and the Trump Organization are also reviewing seized materials relating to them for possible privilege claims. In materials ruled on so far, Jones has approved fewer than 200 items for protection due to attorney-client privilege.

Cohen, who made a hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels to keep quiet about an alleged affair with Trump, is under investigation in connection with fraud-related offenses in his personal business dealings.

Over the weekend, Daniels’ lawyer Michael Avenatti revealed that she was scheduled to meet with federal prosecutors in Manhattan Monday in advance of an expected grand jury appearance, but the meeting was called off after news of it leaked.

Avenatti said prosecutors were concerned about media attention. He criticized the meeting’s cancellation, and prosecutors accused him of leaks that damaged their desire to conduct the probe with “confidentiality.”

With AP

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