Update 4:20pm CT: NBC News issued a correction on Thursday evening saying that federal agents were “monitoring” Cohen’s phone calls, not “listening” to them, as was previously reported. In a video posted on MSNBC’s Twitter account, the outlet explained that the federal agents obtained a “pen register,” or a log of phone lines from Cohen.
An update article appears below.
The wiretap was in place leading up to when the FBI raided Cohen’s office, home, and hotel room last month, NBC News reports. The tap was on at least one phone line that was associated with the lawyer and the White House.
Rudy Giuliani, who was recently appointed to Trump’s legal team and made waves when he discussed Cohen payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels and Trump’s knowledge of it, warned the president not to talk with his long-time lawyer for fear that federal investigators were listening in, according to the news outlet.
However, that was denied by Giuliani.
“Us lawyers have talked about it, we don’t believe it’s true,” Giuliani said to the Daily Beast. “We think it’s going to turn out to be untrue because it would be totally illegal. You can’t wiretap a lawyer, you certainly can’t wiretap his client who’s not involved in the investigation. No one has suggested that Trump was involved in that investigation. So they’re going to wiretap the lawyer, his client, and his client the president of the United States? I don’t think so, not if they want to stay out of jail.”
Cohen is under investigation for the $130,000 payment he made to Daniels, who claims she had an affair with Trump nearly two decades ago and was paid to keep quiet about it in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.
On Wednesday night and Thursday morning Giuliani said Trump “repaid” Cohen for shelling out the hush money, contradicting past statements the president had made regarding the affair and the payment.
Last week, Trump’s long-time lawyer said he will invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination in regards to a lawsuit filed against him by Daniels, citing an ongoing federal investigation.
You can read all of NBC News’ report here.
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This article and headline have been updated.