Sean Hannity should have admitted to relationship with Michael Cohen
18 April, 2018, 00:49 | Author: Diane Mills
Hannity and Fox News are being criticized for not disclosing the host's ties to the lawyer even as Hannity used his show to rip the Federal Bureau of Investigation and special counsel Robert Mueller for the raid on Cohen's office and home last week.
The disclosure came as Cohens attorneys tried to persuade a federal judge in NY to delay prosecutors from examining records and electronic devices seized in the raids on the grounds that many of them are protected by attorney-client privilege.
Cohen's attorneys initially disclosed that Cohen represented Trump, GOP fundraiser Elliott Broidy and a third clientwho wished to remain anonymous.
But, for at least those three other clients, during 2017-2018, Cohen was performing "more traditional legal tasks", the letter said.
It was not immediately clear what legal work Cohen provided Hannity. The client is Hannity, Cohen's lawyer said.
Cohen, of course, arranged a $130,000 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels to keep quiet about her alleged affair with Trump.
Jimmy Kimmel, who recently had a public feud with Hannity following a skit on his Jimmy Kimmel Live! show which mocked First Lady Melania Trump's accent drew the ire of the Fox News host and many critics on social media, quickly jumped on the link between Cohen and Hannity. That is, they are no longer subject to the attorney-client privilege, so if there's anything in them of use to any criminal investigation, there's no reason the FBI won't have access to it. Gabe Sherman said on MSNBC that his sources told him that Hannity turned to Cohen past year when liberal groups were targeting his advertisers to get him fired by Fox News, following the blueprint of what took Bill O'Reilly down.
A spokesperson for Fox News did not immediately respond to questions from NBC News about the relationship between Hannity and Cohen. "And you had the right, by the way, not to have your identity be revealed".
Hannity also said that he "might have handed him 10 bucks". He said the discussions were "almost exclusively about real estate". A lawyer's communications with a client are not covered by the privilege if they did not involve legal advice or were used to further a crime or fraud.
"Why doesn't @FoxNews have a conflict of interest policy requiring Hannity to disclose his personal interest in the Cohen search when commenting on it?" tweeted Walter Shaub, the former director of the independent Office of Government Ethics.
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