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Former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen mistakenly cites fake court cases generated by AI

Former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen mistakenly cites fake court cases generated by AI

Donald Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen admitted to citing fake, AI-generated court cases in a legal document that was presented to a federal judge, as first reported by The New York Times. A filing released Friday said Cohen used Google's Bard to conduct research, thinking it was a "super-charged search engine" rather than an AI chatbot.

The document in question was a motion asking a federal judge to reduce Cohen's three-year probation term, which he now faces with a prison sentence and a guilty plea to tax evasion and other charges. But after reviewing the brief, U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman wrote in a filing that "none of these cases exist" and asked Cohen's attorney David Schwartz to explain why the three cases were included in the motion. I went. There is also whether their now-disowned client helped draft it.

In response, Cohen submitted a written statement saying that he did not intend to mislead the court, adding that he used Google Bard to conduct legal research and sent some of his findings to Schwartz. However, Cohen says that he did not realize that the cases cited by Bard were likely to be fake, nor did he think that Schwartz would add the quotes to the proposal "without confirming that they exist." "Schwartz faces possible sanctions for including the fake quotes.

“As a non-lawyer, I have not kept pace with emerging trends (and the associated risks) in legal technology and did not know that Google Bard is a generative text service that, like Chat-GPT, generates citations. Can do and show details. Seemed real but weren't,'' Cohen writes. "Instead, I thought of it as a super-charged search engine and used it repeatedly in other contexts to (successfully) find accurate information online."

This is not the first time AI-generated quotes have appeared in court. In June, two New York lawyers were disbarred and fined $5,000 after including legal information about fake court cases prepared by ChatGPT. Some lawyers are also using AI to draft arguments, including the legal team of rapper Pras Mitchell, who is now seeking a new trial after receiving a guilty verdict.

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