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Michael Cohen, Trump’s Ex-Lawyer, Released From Prison Due To Coronavirus

By David Aaro April 17th, 2020 | Image Source: Market Watch

Michael Cohen, the former attorney for President Trump, will be released from prison early due to the coronavirus pandemic, a source familiar with the case told Fox News late Thursday.

The source said Cohen will spend 14 days in quarantine inside New York’s Otisville Federal Correctional Institution, and then released to home confinement. Multiple reports said he will be allowed to serve the remainder of his three-year sentence from home.

Cohen, 53, had been transferred last week to a Special Housing Unit — a disciplinary section of the prison — after having a verbal altercation with another inmate, and then back into the general prison population last Friday, sources tell Fox News.

Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer, reads an opening statement as he testifies before the House Oversight and Reform Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington. Cohen will be released from prison early due to the coronavirus pandemic, a source familiar with the case told Fox News late Thursday. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Cohen — who once famously claimed he was willing to “take a bullet” for Trump before later turning against his boss, including during nationally televised congressional testimony in February 2019 — pleaded guilty in 2018 to campaign finance violations, tax evasion and lying to Congress about Trump’s past business dealings in Russia.

He has been active on social media, using the platform to call on Trump to have the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) send its non-violent federal offenders to home confinement during the coronavirus outbreak.

A judge denied a request by Cohen’s on March 24 to have his sentence shortened.

“Apparently searching for a new argument to justify a modification of his sentence to home confinement, Cohen now raises the specter of COVID-19,” Judge William H. Pauley III wrote in the order. “That Cohen would seek to single himself out for release to home confinement appears to be just another effort to inject himself into the news cycle.”

At least 473 federal inmates and 279 Bureau of Prisons staff have tested positive for the coronavirus throughout the U.S, while 18 have died from the virus, according to the BOP.

The agency said an additional 1,198 inmates have been placed in home confinement, following a memo from Attorney General William Barr on March 26, detailing the need to protect both personnel and those in custody from the virus.

Cohen was once described as Trump’s “pit bull.” Their relationship, however, has soured.

He admitted to directing hush payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal, both of whom claimed they had affairs with Trump. Trump has denied the claim.

Roughly two months after he started serving his sentence, Cohen said on Twitter he would return to Congress and testify in regard to the payments if given the opportunity.

“I welcome the opportunity to return to Congress to once again testify under oath truthfully and honestly regarding the hush money payments, which was performed at the direction and in accordance with @POTUS @realDonaldTrump. Justice will be served,” he said last July.

Fox News’ Alex Pappas contributed to this report

Author: David Aaro, Marta Dhanis

Source: Fox News: Michael Cohen, Trump’s ex-lawyer, to be released from prison due to coronavirus: source

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