Fox News host Sean Hannity says Cohen legal consultation 'no big deal'

Trump lawyers fight to keep seized Cohen files out of investigators' hands

Kimmel also criticized Hannity's response to the news, in which he said Cohen has "never represented" him.

"I never gave him a retainer". In a letter filed with the court last Monday, Cohen's lawyers said that Cohen had a solo law practice and had at least 10 clients during this time.

"I think he is so into this like a pig in the mud he can't get out of it, and I think he deserves to be fired", Connolly said. "They're assuming - because I guess he did some type of work for some Republican guy - they're figuring, 'Oh, he must've done a big settlement case for Hannity.' That's not - no, that's not what happened".

Under direct orders from a judge, Cohen's attorney Stephen Ryan named Hannity as the client in court on Monday.

Cohen has said he paid adult-film star Stormy Daniels $130,000 in late 2016 in exchange for her agreement not to discuss an alleged sexual encounter with Trump. He bent over backwards to deny the relationship, claiming nothing more than a few harmless chit-chats over real estate. "I have occasionally had brief discussions with him about legal questions about which I wanted his input and perspective", The Fox News host tweeted on Monday evening.

Daniels sat with her lawyer, Michael Avenatti, who told reporters they were there to help ensure protection for the integrity of the seized documents, some of which they believe pertain to the Daniels agreement. To get the search warrant in the first place, the government had to have convinced the court that Cohen and his so-called clients were not actually in an attorney-client relationship, and therefore their conversations were not privileged.

In response to some wild speculation, let me make clear that I did not ask Michael Cohen to bring this proceeding on my behalf, I have no personal interest in this proceeding, and, in fact, asked that my de minimis discussions with Michael Cohen, which dealt nearly exclusively about real estate, not be made a part of this proceeding.




Mr Cohen did not respond to a request for comment. "But I think it would have been much, much better had you disclosed that relationship".

Fox News anchor Shepard Smith broke the story on the network, reporting that his colleague's name had been mentioned as a third client of Cohen's in open court.

"I have known Michael a long, long time", he continued.

Hannity interjected that his relationship with Cohen was "minimal", something he had underscored in previous statements where he painted the interaction as being mostly focused on real estate and insisted he "never retained" Cohen "in the traditional sense". "It nearly goes without saying, unfortunately, that none of Mr. Cohen's clients want to be associated with the government raid on his home and law office, or want to be affiliated in any way with the proceedings here and the attendant media coverage". They argued that the evidence should be protected by attorney-client privilege.

"Hannity's producers are working to contact him", Mr. Smith said.

"I have faith in the Southern District U.S. attorney's office that their integrity is unimpeachable", the judge said, though she added that naming a special master could also work. Another, the stripper and actress Daniels, sat in the back of the gallery's public courtroom as part of her efforts to keep attention on her story, relating to what she says is a past affair with Trump.

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