Michael Cohen admits fake cases in early release bid came from Google AI program
The former Trump attorney pleaded guilty to campaign finance violations in 2018.
Former President Donald Trump's onetime fixer Michael Cohen sent his attorney non-existent legal cases produced by the artificial intelligence program Google Bard as he sought to beef up his petition for early termination of his supervised release, according to a letter to the court made public Friday.
Cohen, who pleaded guilty to campaign finance violations in 2018, sought an early end to his term of supervised release in a motion that included three cases he believed backed up his argument. His lawyer said Cohen mistakenly believed Google Bard "to be a supercharged search engine, not a generative AI service like Chat-GPT."
That the invalid citations were included in Cohen's motion his attorney insisted "was a mistake driven by sloppiness, not malicious intent" but Judge Jesse Furman is now considering whether to impose sanctions.
"As a non-lawyer, I have not kept up with emerging trends (and related risks) in legal technology and did not realize that Google Bard was a generative text service that, like ChatGPT, could show citations and descriptions that looked real but actually were not," Cohen said in a sworn statement to the court made public Friday.
In his own letter to the court, Cohen's attorney David M. Schwartz said he believed the legal citations came from a different attorney for Cohen, Danya Perry.
"If I had believed that Mr. Cohen had found these cases, I would have researched them. It was my belief, however, that Mr. Cohen had sent me cases found by Ms. Perry," Schwartz said.
Judge Furman gave all parties until January 3 to submit additional comments about possible sanctions and whether Cohen deserves early termination of supervised release.
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