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Judge agrees to postpone Michael Cohen's prison surrender date

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By Tom Winter  with NBC News Politics
Michael Cohen arrives at federal court for his sentencing hearing, on Dec.
Michael Cohen arrives at federal court for his sentencing hearing, on Dec. 12, 2018 in New York.   -   Copyright  Eduardo Munoz Alvarez Getty Images file

A federal judge agreed Wednesday to postpone the start of Michael Cohen's prison stint for 60 days as he recovers from shoulder surgery.

Cohen, President Donald Trump's former lawyer, was sentenced to three years in prison in December after pleading guilty to several crimes, including making secret payments to women who claimed they had affairs with Trump and lying to Congress about the president's business dealings with Russia.

Judge William Pauley III granted a request from Cohen's attorney to push back the date he must report to prison to May 6. Cohen had been previously slated to start his sentence on March 6.

"He recently underwent a serious surgical procedure and he needs to undergo intensive post-surgical therapy and be monitored by his physician for recovery," lawyer Michael Monico said in a letter to the judge.

Monico added that federal prosecutors in New York agreed to the delay, noting that it will give Cohen "substantial" time to prepare for his testimony before Congress.

Earlier this month, Cohen's spokesman Lanny Davis said his client's closed-door testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee was postponed due to "post-surgical needs."

Cohen is slated to talk to the House intelligence panel on Feb. 28.