President Trump’s personal fixer Michael Cohen admitted in court Tuesday that he paid two women hush money — “at direction of the candidate,” a clear reference to Trump — to influence the 2016 presidential election.
Trump’s name was not uttered but the implication was clear as Cohen admitted he cut a $150,000 check in 2016 to protect “the candidate.”
“On or about summer 2016, in coordination and with and at the behest of the candidate, I and the CEO of a media company worked together to keep an individual with information that would be harmful to the candidate from publicly disclosing this information … under which she received compensation of $150,000,” Cohen said in Manhattan federal court.
Cohen is believed to have been referring to payments made to former Playboy model Karen McDougal to keep quiet about an affair with Trump in 2006-2007.
Cohen also admitted he paid a second woman in October 2016 believed to be porn star Stormy Daniels.
The news could spell trouble for Trump, an election-law expert told The Post.
“To the extent Cohen’s claims that he acted at the direction of a candidate could be corroborated, this could be a big problem for Donald Trump,” said Rick Hasen, an election-law expert and professor of law and political science at University of California-Irvine. “Even if he’s not indicted, this is a criminal charge with real penalties.”
Cohen pleaded guilty to two campaign finance-related charges, as well as five tax-evasion charges and one charge of making a false statement to a bank.
Published at Tue, 21 Aug 2018 21:22:56 +0000