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Giuliani evidence should be reviewed by an outside lawyer, Justice Department

Federal prosecutors also asked for outside lawyers to review evidence in the 2018 raid against Michael Cohen.

Updated: May 5, 2021 - 10:08am

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Federal prosecutors are asking a judge to appoint an outside lawyer to review the records seized from former Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani in an FBI raid last week on his New York apartment and office. 

The request was in a letter, unsealed Tuesday, to U.S. District Judge J. Paul Oetken, from federal prosecutors in New York City, according to The Washington Post.

"The Government considers it appropriate for the court to appoint a special master to make the privilege determinations as to materials seized pursuant to the warrants," lawyers from the office of U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss said in the letter.

The special master is typically a retired lawyer or judge who reviews emails, text messages, photos, or other evidence and is often used to show the justice system's impartiality and acts as an assurance of fair treatment. 

The same process was used when the FBI raided the office of then-President Trump lawyer Michael Cohen in 2018.

Prosecutors in the Giuliani case cited "unusually sensitive privilege issues" as the reason for requesting the outside review and to determine which seized information is relevant to the warrant.

Some of the information obtained during the raid may be protected by attorney-client privilege.  

Prosecutors gave Judge Oetken until Monday to respond to their request.