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Michael Cohen taken back into custody for violating terms of release

Michael Cohen, President Trump’s former personal attorney, was taken into custody for violating the terms of his furlough from prison, his attorney said Thursday.

Cohen, who pleaded guilty in 2018 to campaign finance violations and lying to Congress, had been released to home confinement earlier this year as part of the federal Bureau of Prisons’ efforts to stop inmates from contracting the coronavirus.

Cohen was supposed to remain in his home, yet the New York Post last week published a photo of him eating at an Upper East Side restaurant.

Cohen’s lawyer, Jeffrey Levine, conceded in a CNBC interview that Cohen’s detention might be connected to the Post photo.

Levine also said that he and Cohen on Thursday morning had been in a federal court building in lower Manhattan on Thursday morning in order to lobby federal probation officials to loosen the terms of his probation, which prevented him from speaking to the press, posting on social media, or participating in a book or film. Levine said that Cohen was taken into custody there.

“I’ve never seen any language like this in my life that would strip a person of their First Amendment rights to communicate with the media,” Levine told reporters outside the courthouse.

Aiden Pink is the deputy news editor of the Forward. Contact him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @aidenpink

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