NEW YORK –
A U.S. choose on Monday dismissed a lawsuit by Donald Trump’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen accusing Trump, former Attorney General William Barr and others of abruptly returning him to jail in retaliation for writing a tell-all memoir.
In a 33-page determination, U.S. District Judge Lewis Liman in Manhattan rejected Cohen’s claims that placing him in harmful solitary confinement situations for 16 days violated the U.S. Constitution by undermining his free speech, and subjecting him to an unlawful seizure and to heartless and weird punishment.
Liman, a Trump appointee, appeared reluctant find that U.S. Supreme Court precedents “squarely and unequivocally” required dismissing many claims, saying his determination did “profound violence” to Cohen’s constitutional rights.
“Cohen’s criticism alleges an egregious violation of constitutional rights by the manager branch–nothing quick of the use of govt energy to lock up the President’s political enemies for talking critically of him,” Liman wrote.
Liman additionally dismissed a number of claims towards the United States, together with for false arrest.
Andrew Laufer, a lawyer for Cohen, stated, “We strongly and respectfully disagree with the choice” and should enchantment, citing the “grave and intensive abuse of energy that our consumer suffered by the prior administration.”
Trump’s lawyer Alina Habba stated in an electronic mail: “The court docket noticed by way of Cohen’s frivolous lawsuit, which was legally poor and, extra importantly, primarily based upon inflammatory allegations which might be merely not true.” She stated Trump will hold combating towards “innumerable falsehoods being perpetrated by his enemies.”
A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s workplace in Manhattan, which represented the opposite defendants, declined to remark.
The case arose in July 2020 when Cohen, 56, had been serving a since-completed three-year sentence for marketing campaign finance violations and tax evasion below residence confinement as a result of of the danger of contracting COVID-19 in jail.
Authorities returned Cohen to jail amid a dispute over whether or not he may communicate with the media about his forthcoming book whereas below residence confinement.
Cohen stated he suffered extreme complications, shortness of breath and nervousness whereas spending 23-1/2 hours a day in a small cell on the Otisville, New York, federal jail, the place temperatures exceeded 100 levels Fahrenheit (37.8 levels Celsius).
His book “Disloyal: A Memoir” topped the New York Times’ hardcover nonfiction bestseller listing in September 2020.
Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Leslie Adler