(Bloomberg) — President Donald Trump’s former lawyer and fixer asked a federal judge to let him spend the rest of his three-year sentence at home, citing the risk that he may become infected with coronavirus in a federal prison camp.
Michael Cohen said Tuesday in a letter to U.S. District Judge William Pauley in New York that the federal Bureau of Prisons is “demonstrably incapable of safeguarding and treating B.O.P. inmates who are obligated to live in close quarters and are at an enhanced risk of catching the coronavirus.”
Cohen, 53, is currently incarcerated at a minimum-security federal prison camp for non-violent offenders in Otisville, New York. Over the weekend, he shared on Twitter a petition asking Trump to grant home-confinement to all prison camp inmates.
According to the petition, the barracks-like accommodations at prison camps raise the risks of infection for both inmates and staff. Camps also lack “adequate medical staff and are without proper medical equipment, sterilization techniques, gloves, sanitizers, masks, and other necessary items,” the petition claims.
Once one of Trump’s closest associates, Cohen pleaded guilty in August 2018 to campaign finance violations related to his arrangement of hush-money payments to adult-film star Stormy Daniels, who says she had a sexual relationship with Trump about a decade before he became president. After he was charged, Cohen turned on his old boss, calling Trump a racist, a con man and a cheat at a congressional hearing.
Cohen received a sentence of three years in prison, which he began serving in May. He asked Pauley for early release from his sentence in December, citing his cooperation with the government and his time as “a model inmate.” The judge has yet to rule on that request.
The case is U.S. v. Cohen, 18-cr-00602, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).
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