Michael Cohen, Trump’s personal attorney and “fixer,” has also represented conservative talk show host Sean Hannity this year.
A federal judge on Friday ordered Cohen to disclose his client list by 10 a.m. on Monday. Cohen put the scope of his legal practice at issue when he filed a temporary restraining order to prevent the government from reviewing materials seized from his home and office, citing attorney client privilege.
At 10 a.m. Cohen’s attorney filed a letter refusing to name any clients who weren’t already public. The letter did not cite any relevant legal precedent. The names of clients are not typically subject to attorney-client privilege.
This year, Cohen said he had three clients. The first is Donald Trump. The second is Elliot Broidy, a Trump fundraiser who retained Cohen to negotiate a hush money agreement with a Playboy Playmate. The arrangement with Broidy was reported publicly by the Wall Street Journal on Friday. The final client, Cohen’s lawyer said, ordered him not to reveal his name publicly. Cohen’s letter argued that exposing the name of the third client could be embarrassing.
Court reconvened at 2 p.m. and Cohen’s attorney renewed his request to keep the identity of the third client secret. He said the client was famous and offered to hand the name to the judge in a sealed envelope.
The judge did not buy it — and ordered Cohen’s lawyer to publicly disclose the third client anyway. Cohen’s lawyer confirmed it was Sean Hannity.
Michael Cohen's previously unnamed third client is SEAN HANNITY.
— erica orden (@eorden) April 16, 2018
Hannity’s radio show was scheduled to start at 3 p.m. ET on Monday. Hannity did not appear for the first 10 minutes of the program. Instead, his producers played music and aired clips of Sunday night’s James Comey interview on ABC without commentary.
Hannity then briefly came on and said that Fox News was talking about him. He said his show would continue to play the Comey interview while he decided whether he’d address the news.
— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) August 10, 2015
“We have been friends a long time. I have sought legal advice from Michael,” Hannity told a Wall Street Journal reporter shortly after the new broke.
This is a breaking news story and has been updated as new information emerged.