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FBI Sought Trump 'Access Hollywood' Tape Records in Michael Cohen Raid

FBI Sought Trump 'Access Hollywood' Tape Records in Michael Cohen Raid

The federal agents who raided the office of President Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, on Monday were specifically looking for records related to the "Access Hollywood" tape where Trump bragged about grabbing women by their genitals.

The disclosure comes a day after it was revealed that the authorities also sought documents from Mr. Cohen related to payments made to two women who claim they had affairs with Mr. Trump, Karen McDougal and Stephanie Clifford, as well as information on the role of the publisher of The National Enquirer in silencing the women.

"In the process of asking for that, they have to demonstrate why it is likely evidence of a crime", said Jennifer Rodgers, a former federal prosecutor who is executive director of Columbia Law School's Center for the Advancement of Public Integrity.

A lawyer for Trump was also at the hearing to ask U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood to order the Department of Justice to delay looking at the seized materials until the issue is litigated, the New York Times reports. He called Mueller's investigation "an attack on our country".

Public corruption prosecutors in the USA attorney's office in Manhattan are trying to determine, according to one person familiar with the investigation, if there was any fraud related to payments to McDougal and Clifford.

The Cohen attorneys also want to see which, if any, of the documents might be excluded due to attorney-client privilege.

Lawyers for both Cohen and the president told a NY federal judge that the material is protected under attorney- client privilege.

Cohen is seeking a temporary restraining order regarding searches of Cohen's home and office by Federal Bureau of Investigation agents on Monday, a Justice Department spokesman said earlier on Friday.

Cohen wasn't present for the hearing.

"His attorney-client privilege is no greater than any other person who seeks legal advice", he said.

Prosecutors said today their criminal probe is focused on Cohen's personal business dealings.

Clifford's lawyer, Michael Avenatti, spoke briefly in court.

"We have every reason to believe that some of the documents seized relate to my client", he said. Daniels was paid $130,000 during the 2016 campaign.

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