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Michael Cohen skips court to smoke cigars, judge fumes

Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s maybe-current, maybe-former personal attorney, is having a nice Friday afternoon, smoking cigars on a Manhattan bench with his friends on the first truly beautiful day in New York City in months.

According to CNN, Cohen told photographers who captured him smoking cigars with his friends to send all the great pictures they’d taken of him to his mother.

Meanwhile, his lawyers are in court, where a judge is reportedly upset that Cohen isn’t there with them.

Earlier this week, FBI agents raided Cohen’s office and residences, and the search warrants reportedly included conversations between Cohen and Trump, who has been Cohen’s only client for years, though White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Friday she didn’t know whether Cohen still represented Trump. The search also reportedly included, possibly among other things, documents related a $130,000 payment to Stormy Daniels, which Cohen made just days before the 2016 election.

Daniels, an adult film actress, says she had an affair with Trump in 2006.

Whatever the state of their relationship, Trump and Cohen’s lawyers went to court Friday in an effort to block the Justice Department from reading seized documents, and although Cohen was not technically required to be there, a judge seemed upset that he didn’t appear.

Asked to specify how many clients shared attorney-client privilege with Cohen, his attorney said, “I need more time to really analyze that question.”

“Your inability to answer these questions suggest to me that your client, Mr. Cohen, should be in court with you next time,” the judge told his lawyer, according to reporters in the room.

According to The Wall Street Journal, a prosecutor asked the judge to deny Cohen’s emergency stay Friday, saying, “This has clearly been a delay tactic from the outset.” For now, the judge has ordered Cohen’s attorney to bring Cohen to the upcoming court hearing Monday.

Cohen’s afternoon smoking cigars with his apparently denim-loving friends comes just one day after his lawyers confirmed that Cohen will invoke his Fifth Amendment rights and will not answer any questions about the Daniels’ case in an effort to avoid self-incrimination. On Friday, the DOJ also confirmed that Cohen has been under criminal investigation in New York for months because of his business dealings.

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