Michael Cohen is seeking to dismiss Stormy Daniels’ lawsuit alleging that he “colluded” with her former attorney, Keith Davidson, to discredit her account of having an affair with President Trump.
In a motion filed Tuesday, Cohen’s attorneys argue that the U.S. Central District of California lacks jurisdiction as he neither lives nor works in the state.
Per Daniels’ June complaint, Davidson acted as a “puppet” for Cohen, communicating with him without her knowledge. The suit contained friendly text messages between the two men discussing an attempt to have the former adult film star appear on Fox News to deny her alleged 2006 sexual liaison with Trump.
Davidson subsequently filed a cross-complaint alleging that Cohen recorded their phone calls without his knowledge.
But Cohen’s attorneys say that the state lacks jurisdiction as there is no “connection between Cohen and the state of California.”
“Neither the Complaint nor the Crossclaim allege that Cohen was physically present in the state of California when he performed the acts allegedly arising to the claims therein,” the Tuesday filing states.
In previous filings, Cohen’s team has argued that the matters raised in this particular complaint overlap with other pending cases. Daniels brought a defamation suit against Trump in New York for publicly denying their affair. Federal prosecutors in New York are also looking into the $130,000 in hush money that Cohen paid to Daniels just before the 2016 election as part of a broader probe into Cohen’s financial dealings.
Cohen’s lawyers called the California suit a “blatant attempt at judge-shopping an forum shopping.” They also dismissed the collusion allegations as “a product of complete invention.”
Cohen this week suggested that he may be willing to flip on Trump and cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller and federal prosecutors