Napolitano Says Trump Has No Attorney-Client Protection on Tapes: He Was Engaging in ‘Civil Fraud’
“What kind of lawyer would tape a client?” President Donald Trump asked on Twitter Wednesday morning.
Judge Andrew Napolitano has an answer to that question: A lawyer who may have been participating in a civil fraud.
Appearing on America’s Newsroom Wednesday, Napolitano said that the president is not protected by attorney-client privilege on his leaked conversation with his then-lawyer Michael Cohen because the two were engaging in a fraud.
“There is an indication of a fraud,” Napolitano said. “And the significance of that is, if the client and the lawyer discuss the commission of a crime, or discuss the commission of a fraud, there is no attorney-client privilege in that conversation. Meaning the tape can be used by anybody who can get their hands on it for any purposes.”
Napolitano said that the tape shows Trump and Cohen, by discussing the payment to Playboy Model Karen McDougal via the National Enquirer, to be conducting a civil fraud. This act differs from criminal fraud in that McDougal was not duped out of cash.
Still, the implications of the tape are damning for Trump, according to Napolitano. As far as he’s concerned, the taper shatters the argument of Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani that the president should be protected by attorney-client privilege.
“Both civil fraud and criminal fraud are enough to burst the attorney-client privilege.” Napolitano said.
Host Bill Hemmer asked if the president has reason to worry, based on this tape.
“Yes,” the judge said.
Watch the clip above, courtesy of Fox News.
[featured image via screengrab]
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