Michael Cohen hunts for new lawyers in FBI probe

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Those lawyers are "not expected to represent him going forward", ABC News first reported.

Michael Avenatti, who represents Daniels in a lawsuit seeking to void the hush agreement, said news of Cohen's imminent arrest confirms his predictions.

A source familiar with the NY litigation, where a review is underway of documents seized from Cohen in April, indicated the reports that Cohen is splitting with his lawyers appeared to be correct.

News of McDermott's looming departure from the case comes ahead of a federal judge's Friday deadline to conduct a privilege review over documents seized in the April raid of Cohen's home and offices in NY.

Without legal representation, it is likely that Mr. Cohen will cooperate with federal prosecutors in NY, a source told ABC News.

His choice may help steer whether he decides to cooperate with prosecutors investigating his personal business dealings, or with Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team, which is investigating Russian influence in the Trump campaign.

Michael Cohen, U.S. President Donald Trump's longtime fixer and attorney, arrives to a court hearing in Manhattan in April. Cohen wants to hire a lawyer who has a relationship with the USA prosecutor's office in Manhattan, the source added.

Donald Trump
Trump has worked with Cohen for years. Leon Neal Getty Images

But as the investigation widens, and with Cohen's legal team in turmoil, the chances increase that Cohen could cooperate with prosecutors.

And Cohen's name appeared repeatedly in the now infamous dossier of unverified allegations, which included salacious claims about Trump, prepared by former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele.

Cohen's business is now under investigation in Manhattan, which includes the controversial $130,000 hush money payment made to porn star Stormy Daniels just before the 2016 presidential election.

President Trump, through his representatives, has denied the allegations of McDougal and Daniels.

Then there is McDougal, who in August 2016 signed a $150,000 deal with American Media Inc., the publisher of the National Enquirer, that transferred to the company the rights to her story of an alleged ten-month romantic affair with Trump.

While Trump had long denied knowledge of the payment, former NY mayor Rudy Giuliani confirmed the reimbursement in a bombshell interview last month on Fox News.

Lawyers for Mr. Cohen didn't respond to requests for comment.

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