Ex-Trump attorney Michael Cohen taken back into federal custody

Ex-Trump attorney Michael Cohen taken back into federal custody
Michael Cohen arrives at his Manhattan apartment, Thursday, May 21, 2020, in New York. (John Minchillo/AP, File)

President Donald Trump’s former attorney, Michael Cohen, has been taken back into federal custody to serve out the rest of his sentence for campaign finance violations and other crimes, according to multiple reports.

Cohen's sentence was furloughed in May due to the threat posed by the novel coronavirus in prisons. He was transferred to home confinement May 21 and taken back into custody Thursday.

In a statement obtained by The Associated Press, officials with the Bureau of Prisons said Cohen had “refused the conditions of his home confinement and as a result, has been returned to a BOP facility.” 

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Last week, the New York Post published photos that appeared to show Cohen, 53, dining at a restaurant on Manhattan’s East Side, an apparent violation of the conditions of his release. However, an unidentified source told The New York Times that Cohen was taken back into custody because he “refused to sign papers agreeing to certain conditions related to media appearances and writing books.”

An attorney for Cohen, Roger B. Adler, told the Times that he was “unaware of any conduct” by Cohen “which would have warranted interfering with his medical furlough.” He told the Times that Cohen believed he was allowed to dine out as part of his release.

"It's my hope that it's a misunderstanding of some kind that can be promptly resolved," he said.

In 2018, Cohen admitted to lying to Congress during an investigation into Russian election meddling headed by then-special counsel Robert Mueller. He later also pleaded guilty to eight other charges, including multiple counts of tax evasion and arranging illicit payments to silence women who posed a threat to Trump’s presidential campaign.

He began serving his sentence in May 2019 at the Federal Correctional Institution, Otisville, in New York.