Judge orders former Trump lawyer released –book ban is retaliation


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A federal judge on Thursday ordered the release from prison of President Donald Trump’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen by Friday afternoon.

Judge Alvin Hellerstein found that Cohen was taken into custody July 9 and returned to prison in retaliation for balking at a condition that he not publish a book — about Trump or anyone else — while serving the remainder of his three-year criminal sentence on home confinement.

“I’ve never seen such a clause, in 21 years in being a judge and sentencing people,” Hellerstein said at a Manhattan federal court hearing held after Cohen sued this week to win his re-release from prison.

“How can I take any other inference but that it was retaliatory?” Hellerstein asked about the condition, which also would have barred Cohen from speaking to journalists or posting on social media.

I’ve known a couple of lawyers I had considered honest and straightforward. Then – like Trump’s lawyers – they proved willing to ignore reason and justice, trying to build a sleazy case to achieve an absurd decision on behalf of a client at any cost. I parted company with them, forever. When your job description presumes ethics and your practice demonstrates hypocrisy and deceit – you’re not worth hiring. Or even sharing a couple of beers with at a ballgame.