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Michael Cohen Had to Burn an Early Draft of His Book in Prison After Fearing His Pro-Trump Guards Would Find it

Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Donald Trump's former attorney, Michael Cohen, rocked the Trump administration when he was arrested for crimes uncovered by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

After cooperating with Mueller, Cohen testified before the House Oversight Committee, where he asserted that Trump ordered him to pay hush money to at least two women who claimed to have had an affair with Trump.

After serving one year of his three year prison sentence, Cohen is serving the rest of his time at home due to the pandemic.

Last month, he made headlines for releasing the foreword of his tell-all memoir, Disloyal, regarding what he saw and did as one of Trump's closest confidants.

With the book set for release this fall, Cohen opened up to Vanity Fair about the lengths he went to in order to protect the 500 page manuscript in prison.

After a fight with another inmate, Cohen was due for solitary confinement. Prison guards were set to collect his belongings and search his cell for contraband.

According to Vanity Fair:

"Hidden in his cell was a 500-odd page preliminary manuscript for the tell-all he had decided to call Disloyal. He knew the guards largely supported Donald Trump, Cohen's former boss and a subject of the book. He also knew they sometimes leaked things about him or other high-profile inmates in his minimum-security camp. That manuscript would be a jackpot."

Cohen was afraid that the pro-Trump guards would find a way to get the manuscript to the White House, or leak it to the media.

Because this was around the first night of Passover, the prison supplied a contained fire that allowed its Jewish inmates to burn leavened products—or hametz. Instead of bread, Cohen burned the 500 pages of his manuscript, knowing that his wife had access to a backup copy on a thumb drive.

People were skeptical of Cohen's claim.



Others thought Cohen made a smart move.



Cohen can rest assured now that he'll be serving the rest of his prison sentence at his residence, but this almost wasn't the case. Cohen's compassionate release was delayed when the Justice Department intervened and he was sent back to prison for refusing to hold off on publishing the memoir.

His release was reinstated after a judge found that Cohen's right to free speech was being violated.

Despite Cohen's years of service for Donald Trump, many are commending his determination to publish the book in the face of White House opposition.



Cohen has also announced that he'll be appearing in a series of ads for the political action committee American Bridge, urging voters to rethink their support for Donald Trump.

Disloyal is expected to hit shelves this October.