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Oh, Dear God: Feds ‘Monitored’ Michael Cohen’s Phone, Logged Call With White House

"The wires were tapped!"

Update

Predictably, NBC has issued a “correction” on their original reporting. We’ll just excerpt that correction here and then leave the original story as is below because at the end of the day, who the fuck knows what’s actually going on here. Apparently not NBC and definitely not Donald Trump.

CORRECTION: Earlier today, NBC News reported that there was a wiretap on the phones of Michael Cohen, President Trump’s longtime personal attorney, citing two separate sources with knowledge of the legal proceedings involving Cohen.

But three senior U.S. officials now dispute that, saying that the monitoring of Cohen’s phones was limited to a log of calls, known as a pen register, not a wiretap where investigators can actually listen to calls.]

NBC News has changed the headline and revised parts of the original article.


Earlier

“Terrible! We just found out that the Feds had Cohen’s ‘wires tapped!'”

Boy, oh boy folks, it’s falling apart for Donald Trump and as predicted by many an attorney and as feared by many of his own associates, it looks like Michael Cohen may prove to be Trump’s undoing.

In the wake of Rudy Giuliani’s rather stunning admission that Donald Trump was in fact not being forthcoming about the payment to Stormy Daniels (I mean, there’s nothing stunning about Trump being obtuse, it’s the admission from his newly hired lawyer on national television that was stunning), NBC is out reporting that Cohen’s phones were tapped. To wit:

Federal investigators have wiretapped the phone lines of Michael Cohen, the longtime personal lawyer for President Donald Trump who is under investigation for a payment he made to an adult film star who alleged she had an affair with Trump, according to two people with knowledge of the legal proceedings involving Cohen.

And it gets worse. Federal investigators reportedly intercepted at least one call between Cohen and the White House:

At least one phone call between a phone line associated with Cohen and the White House was intercepted, the person said.

Apparently, the surveillance was in place “for weeks” ahead of the raid on Cohen’s offices, hotel room and home – those would be the raids authorized by Rod Rosenstein on a tip from Mueller.

NBC goes on to say that Giuliani has “warned Trump that Cohen is likely to flip on him,” but according to sources, the President insists that not going to happen, raising the following obvious question: what exactly does Cohen know?

For his part, Giuliani says he was not aware of the wiretaps.

  • GIULIANI HASN’T BEEN INFORMED OF ANY FED COHEN WIRETAPS: W.POST
  • GIULIANI SAYS TRUMP SHOULD’VE BEEN TOLD OF COHEN WIRETAP: WP
  • GIULIANI TELLS POST THAT HE’S TALKING TO TRUMP SOON ON WIRETAPS

You can bet this is going to lead to a truly epic Twitter tirade from the President and one certainly imagines that this is going to make him even more inclined to clean house at DoJ.

Remember, all of this comes amid an ongoing shakeup in his legal team which will no longer include Ty Cobb who we learned on Wednesday will be replaced by Emmet T. Flood, the Washington lawyer who represented Bill Clinton during his impeachment.

Trump’s recent tweets and comments delivered during a truly insane diatribe on Fox & Friends last week seem to indicate he is an (orange) pubic hair away from firing some folks at the Justice Department.

Can’t blame it on Obama now and when it comes to “a good lawyer”, this would be a good time to find one…

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2 comments on “Oh, Dear God: Feds ‘Monitored’ Michael Cohen’s Phone, Logged Call With White House

  1. This is not good news for Cohen, Trump or anyone who spoke to Cohen and engages in gray or black business. It probably means the FBI had been investigating him for a protracted period of time. To obtain such an order, the FBI must use the procedure set forth in 18 U.S. Code § 2518*, and in particular I direct your attention to § 2518 (1)(a)-(f) and (3)(a)-(d), see below.

    A judge considered detailed facts which led to the conclusion that the essential requirements of these sections and sub-sections were established and then signed an order authorizing or approving the interception of Cohen’s wire, oral, or electronic communications. The hearing before Judge Wood did not address this order or the contents of any interception, and pursuant to the statute it will be quite some time before the public will know of its contents, if at all. See, 18 U.S. Code § 2518 (8),(9),(10),(11).

    (1) Each application for an order authorizing or approving the interception of a wire, oral, or electronic communication under this chapter shall be made in writing upon oath or affirmation to a judge of competent jurisdiction and shall state the applicant’s authority to make such application. Each application shall include the following information:

    (a) the identity of the investigative or law enforcement officer making the application, and the officer authorizing the application;

    (b) a full and complete statement of the facts and circumstances relied upon by the applicant, to justify his belief that an order should be issued, including (i) details as to the particular offense that has been, is being, or is about to be committed, (ii) except as provided in subsection (11), a particular description of the nature and location of the facilities from which or the place where the communication is to be intercepted,

    (iii) a particular description of the type of communications sought to be intercepted, (iv) the identity of the person, if known, committing the offense and whose communications are to be intercepted;

    (c) a full and complete statement as to whether or not other investigative procedures have been tried and failed or why they reasonably appear to be unlikely to succeed if tried or to be too dangerous;

    (d) a statement of the period of time for which the interception is required to be maintained. If the nature of the investigation is such that the authorization for interception should not automatically terminate when the described type of communication has been first obtained, a particular description of facts establishing probable cause to believe that additional communications of the same type will occur thereafter;

    (e) a full and complete statement of the facts concerning all previous applications known to the individual authorizing and making the application, made to any judge for authorization to intercept, or for approval of interceptions of, wire, oral, or electronic communications involving any of the same persons, facilities or places specified in the application, and the action taken by the judge on each such application; and

    (f) where the application is for the extension of an order, a statement setting forth the results thus far obtained from the interception, or a reasonable explanation of the failure to obtain such results.

    (2) …

    (3) Upon such application the judge may enter an ex parte order, as requested or as modified, authorizing or approving interception of wire, oral, or electronic communications within the territorial jurisdiction of the court in which the judge is sitting (and outside that jurisdiction but within the United States in the case of a mobile interception device authorized by a Federal court within such jurisdiction), if the judge determines on the basis of the facts submitted by the applicant that—

    (a) there is probable cause for belief that an individual is committing, has committed, or is about to commit a particular offense enumerated in section 2516 of this chapter;

    (b) there is probable cause for belief that particular communications concerning that offense will be obtained through such interception;

    (c) normal investigative procedures have been tried and have failed or reasonably appear to be unlikely to succeed if tried or to be too dangerous;

    (d) except as provided in subsection (11), there is probable cause for belief that the facilities from which, or the place where, the wire, oral, or electronic communications are to be intercepted are being used, or are about to be used, in connection with the commission of such offense, or are leased to, listed in the name of, or commonly used by such person.

    *https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/2518

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