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Trump lawyer Michael Cohen under criminal investigation

Trump lawyer Michael Cohen under criminal investigation

Public corruption prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney's office in Manhattan are trying to determine if there was any fraud related to the payments to Karen McDougal and Stormy Daniels, according to one of the people.

She also claims that she was paid by the National Enquirer for her story and that the story was never printed.

Monday's search was broader than previously reported: in addition to Cohen's home and office, there were court-authorized searches of a safety deposit box and two cellphones.

It also establishes a protective barrier between Mueller and one of the seedier Trump scandals.

Monday's high-profile raid on Cohen's offices, home and hotel room mark the latest twist in a legal drama that experts say could pose serious risks for Cohen and Trump alike. As the Mueller probe has widened since its start in May 2017, senior members of the US Congress have repeatedly warned Trump not to fire the special counsel.

As news of the raids surfaced Monday, Trump called it "a real disgrace". He said Cohen reached out to him after being contacted by Davidson and said he retained Trump's lawyer "after he informed me about his prior relationship with Mr. Davidson". Rosenstein has repeatedly said that he has not seen any reason to dismiss Mueller.

"'Crime/fraud exception' trumps attorney-client privilege, and lawyer can testify under subpoena in criminal proceedings", Whitehouse wrote on Twitter. Legal ethics rules bar attorneys from settling a claim without their clients' knowledge or using their own money to fund settlements.

"The attorney-client privilege can't at the same time be used as a sword (and) as a shield", McKay told Wood.




"A well-regarded Republican appointed US Atty (attorney) obtaining valid search warrants, approved by a judge, that are then. carried out by career, upstanding Federal Bureau of Investigation agents doing their job to search for the truth is NOT A WITCH HUNT".

In his statement, Avenatti says he and Daniels "will fully cooperate with any search for the truth regarding the threats, cover-up and lies concerning the NDA and $130k payment". Initially, Mueller had requested some records from Cohen while he was with the Trump family company - a position he held for about a decade - yet dropped the request after Cohen pushed back.

The New York Times, which first reported the news about the two women, said the search warrant for the Federal Bureau of Investigation raids also sought information about McDougal, who was paid $150,000 by the parent company of The National Enquirer tabloid, which then withheld a story about her relationship with Trump.

"He is the president of the United States", she said. "It's an enormously aggressive move for any prosecutor to make, particularly given Cohen's client", said Sol Wisenberg, a deputy special prosecutor during the Starr investigation.

"Michael Cohen was in every single meeting I attended before the campaign", Caputo said.

Of Trump, McKay said: "His attorney-client privilege is no greater than any other person who seeks legal advice".

Common Cause, a watchdog group, filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission earlier this year alleging that the US$130,000 payment to Ms. Daniels was an "unreported in-kind contribution" to Mr. Trump's campaign and against the law.

Just five days ago, Trump broke his public silence on Daniels, saying he did not know anything about Cohen's payment to her. In short, Mueller is outsourcing the work, protecting himself from some of the fallout, and will likely receive the same results as he would have searching through Cohen's documents himself.


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