Donald Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen will be re-released from prison to home confinement on Friday, after a federal judge ruled that he was sent back to jail earlier this month as an act of retaliation over his plans to publish an unflattering book about the president.
U.S. District Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein said that Cohen’s abrupt reincarceration was “retaliatory because of his desire to exercise his First Amendment rights.”
He ordered that Cohen be returned to his home, where he will be under electronic surveillance to complete the remainder of his term.
Cohen has said that he plans to publish his tell all book at the end of September. Cohen will be released at 2 PM ET after he undergoes a coronavirus test.
“The purpose of transferring Mr. Cohen from furlough and home confinement is retaliatory, and it is retaliatory because of his desire to exercise his First Amendment rights to publish a book and discuss anything about the book or anything else he wants,” Hellerstein said at a hearing on Thursday.
He left it up to Cohen’s attorneys and lawyers for the government to negotiate the exact language of a condition of his release that restricted his interaction with the media. But Hellerstein made clear that the condition must be in accordance with the First Amendment. The stated purpose of the condition is that Cohen not “glamorize” his home confinement, as he is still serving his sentence.
More to come.
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