Trump lawyer forced to reveal another client: Sean Hannity

Trump lawyer forced to reveal another client: Sean Hannity

Todd Harrison, a lawyer for Mr Cohen, said at Friday's hearing that "thousands" of documents seized were likely privileged, and that many related to clients other than Mr Trump.

Hannity addressed the controversy twice during his television show Monday night, brushing off criticism from lawyer Alan Dershowitz who told him, "you should have disclosed your relationship with Cohen when you talked about him on the show". Tucker Carlson said Hannity had a right to try and defend his privacy.

The disclosure came as a NY judge disappointed a lawyer for Trump by letting prosecutors proceed with the cataloguing of evidence including multiple electronic devices that were seized in raids while a system is set up to ensure that records protected by attorney-client privilege aren't disclosed to investigators.

The hearing came after an Federal Bureau of Investigation raid on Mr Cohen a week ago, in which documents relating to a clandestine payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels were reportedly seized.

Noting that Hannity had come under pressure from left-wing groups - Media Matters, for one, targeted Hannity's advertisers over the Seth Rich story - Sherman said he was told that Hannity "got paranoid" and hired Cohen to look into those groups.

Hannity immediately pushed back, repeating what he said earlier that his relationship with Cohen was "minimal" and mostly about real estate. "I have occasionally had brief discussions with him about legal questions about which I wanted his input and perspective", Hannity wrote on Twitter.

On the trip south, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders sought to put distance between Trump and Cohen, saying: "I believe they've still got some ongoing things, but the president has a large number of attorneys, as you know".

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Cohen's attorneys were asked to name his clients as part of the fight over whether the records were subject to attorney-client privilege, but they initially sought to avoid naming his third legal client.

In fact, while responding on his radio show to news that he had been identified as one of Cohen's three clients, Hannity explicitly stated that he was never represented by nor had he ever retained Cohen.

That prompted a loud gasp in the crowded courtroom given Hannity's close ties to Trump - and because he had not disclosed his association with Cohen in multiple on-air commentaries about the case, even when Cohen appeared as his guest.

Sean Hannity quickly became the target of the mainstream media after it was revealed the Fox News host had met with Donald Trump's lawyer, Michael Cohen.

Hannity was named by Cohen when he was forced to disclose a third "mystery" client after the raid. Wood said she was weighing appointing a special master, a neutral individual who would oversee potential attorney-client privilege claims. "I think it would have been much, much better had they disclosed the relationship".

In court filings, the government has argued that the evidence taken from Cohen can be reviewed by a walled-off "taint team" of prosecutors who can judge which documents are relevant to the criminal investigation and which are not and should be kept confidential. "You could have said that you had asked him for advice or whatever". He gave $130,000 to Stormy Daniels, the porn actress, and she attended the court hearing Monday, listening to the arguments without expression.

But she added that "a special master might have some role here", to ensure the perception of fairness.

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