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Special master in Cohen case rejects more than a third of legal team's privileged items

The Hill logo The Hill 7/20/2018 Aris Folley
Stanislaw Michalkiewicz et al. standing next to a man in a suit and tie © Provided by The Hill

The special master in the case of President Trump's former longtime lawyer, Michael Cohen, has reportedly rejected more than a third of his legal team's assertions that documents seized by federal agents are limited by attorney-client privilege.

According to court documents filed Thursday, Special master Barbara Jones found that 1,452 out of the 4,085 items designated privileged by the lawyer's legal team are not privileged. Jones "agrees with the plaintiff" that 2,633 of the documents or records meet attorney-client privilege standards.

The items that have been designated not privileged will "promptly be released to the government" for potential use by prosecutors in the case against Cohen, court documents say.

Jones was appointed by a federal judge in April to probe documents seized by the FBI earlier this year after they raided the lawyer's home, office and hotel room. She was appointed to determine whether the items are protected under attorney-client privilege or are highly personal.

Cohen is currently being investigated in New York for a number of alleged financial crimes, including bank fraud.

Prosecutors have looked into the $130,000 payment that Cohen made to adult-film star Stormy Daniels, which was part of a nondisclosure agreement to keep her quiet about an alleged affair she says she had with Trump in 2006.

Updated: 9:05 p.m.

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