News Roundup

Afternoon Briefs: Michael Cohen sent back to jail; former state chief justice's suit against actor can proceed

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Trump’s former personal lawyer returns to jail after refusing home confinement terms

Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer, was returned to jail Thursday after refusing to sign a document that would have prevented him from speaking to the media or publishing a book during his home confinement. Cohen, who pleaded guilty in 2018 to campaign finance violations and other crimes and was sentenced to three years in prison, was released in April because of medical conditions that could make him more vulnerable to COVID-19. He wrote last week on Twitter that he planned to release a book in September that would detail his experiences working with Trump. (CNN, the New York Times, NPR, the Wall Street Journal)

Federal judge allows former Alabama chief justice’s suit against actor to proceed

U.S. District Judge Andrew Carter on Monday refused to throw out former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore’s lawsuit against actor Sacha Baron Cohen. Moore and his wife, Kayla, filed the lawsuit in 2018 after Moore claimed that he was defamed and tricked into appearing on an episode of Cohen’s show. In the 2018 episode of Who is America?, Moore alleges that Cohen posed as an Israeli anti-terrorism expert and referred to him as a pedophile. Moore has denied past allegations that he made sexual advances toward women when they were teenagers and is seeking $95 million in damages. The case, Moore v. Cohen, is in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. (The Hill,

Undocumented immigrants can’t be detained to prevent deportation, appeals court says

The New Jersey Superior Court’s Appellate Division held Wednesday in a precedential decision that state courts can’t order undocumented immigrants to be detained to avoid deportation. Defendants Juan Molchor and Jose Rios were charged with second-degree aggravated assault and detained after prosecutors argued that they were a flight risk or could be removed by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement before trial. Judge Mitchel Ostrer said in the court’s opinion that the New Jersey Criminal Justice Reform Act did not authorize that action. (, July 8 opinion)

New York attorney general suggests independent panel, not mayor, should oversee city police

New York Attorney General Letitia James released a report Wednesday detailing police misconduct at protests in response to George Floyd’s death and recommending that an independent panel oversee New York City police and hire the commissioner. The report also recommends that police stop using aggressive crowd-control tactics and calls on legislators to pass the department’s rules about use of force into law. (The New York Times, July 8 report)

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