National News

Former Judge Chosen to Review Materials Seized From Michael Cohen

Posted April 26, 2018 3:40 p.m. EDT

NEW YORK — Barbara S. Jones, a lawyer who served as a federal judge in New York, was selected Thursday to oversee the process of screening materials seized in a recent FBI raid from President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen.

The selection of Jones to determine whether any of the materials are protected by attorney-client privilege appeared to resolve, at least for now, a dispute between lawyers for Cohen and Trump and the government over who should get to review the materials and how the process should proceed.

The judge overseeing the dispute, Kimba M. Wood of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, announced in a hearing that she was choosing Jones to serve as the special master in the case. The parties had submitted seven other possible candidates, including former magistrate judges and prosecutors.

Jones served on the district court for 16 years, and before that worked as a federal prosecutor in the U.S. attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York, the same office that is now investigating Cohen. She later was a senior aide to Robert M. Morgenthau, the former Manhattan district attorney.

As a private lawyer, Jones has served as a monitor or a neutral party in disputes. In 2014, she was picked to hear the appeal by Ray Rice, a former Baltimore Ravens player, of the National Football League’s decision to suspend him over a domestic abuse case.