Michael Cohen Hires New Attorney To Represent Him In New York Probe

on September 19, 2017 in Washington, DC.
Mark Wilson/Getty Images North America

Michael Cohen has hired a veteran trial lawyer to represent him in the Southern District of New York’s criminal investigation into his financial dealings.

Both Vanity Fair and CNN reported Tuesday that President Trump’s longtime fixer has retained Guy Petrillo, former head of the criminal division for the U.S. Attorney’s office in Manhattan.

Cohen is currently deciding whether to cooperate with federal prosecutors investigating him for bank fraud, campaign finance violations, and other possible financial crimes.

Petrillo did not immediately return TPM’s request for comment.

Reports surfaced last week that Cohen would part ways with his team at McDermott, Will and Emery for an attorney better acquainted with the office that is prosecuting him. A trio of McDermott lawyers lead by Stephen Ryan oversaw a privilege review of hundreds of thousands of documents seized from Cohen’s premises in April.

The New York Times reported that the break was due in part to issues related to Cohen’s payment of Ryan’s legal bills.

Ryan’s reported replacement, Petrillo, served as assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York from 1990 to 1997 and then spent a decade in private practice at Dechert LLP. Petrillo returned to the U.S. attorney’s office as chief of the criminal division from 2008 through 2009 before co-founding a white-shoe law firm focused on representing individuals under criminal investigation.

Per the website of his firm, Petrillo Klein & Boxer, he is “regularly engaged by clients in criminal and civil matters prosecuted by the Department Justice.”

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