Published: Thu, July 26, 2018
Global | By Enrique Rogers

Trump blasts Cohen over secret tape disclosure

Trump blasts Cohen over secret tape disclosure

Cohen tells Trump that The New York Times wants to unseal documents on his divorce from Ivana Trump ahead of the election (an effort that was ultimately unsuccessful, as Cohen predicts).

Cohen's lawyer went on CNN to discuss the tapes, citing Trump suggesting cash to make a payment in the audio as something only "drug dealers and mobsters" use.

Lanny Davis, a lawyer for Mr. Cohen, told the Journal it had been "Michael Cohen's habit for many years to record conversations in lieu of taking notes".

Although it is unclear if the content of the tape creates legal hurdles for the president regarding campaign finance violations, Trumpers believe the pair's conflict has been orchestrated by Special Counsel Robert Mueller's strategy for the Russian Federation probe.

Facing an FBI investigation after years of acting as a "fixer" for Trump, Cohen, also a key figure in the Russian Federation investigation, increasingly appears to have flipped on his former boss in what's quickly become the greatest legal threat to his presidency.

CNN reported that Trump's attorneys had waived his attorney-client privilege on the tape.

Ms McDougal reportedly received $150,000 (£115,000) from the Enquirer for her story.

"I need to open up a company for the transfer of all that info regarding our friend David", Cohen says, apparently referring to David Pecker, the head of American Media.

British and Irish ministers hold London conference
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt has said Europe must "show much more flexibility and creativity" to avoid a "no deal by accident" situation post-Brexit.

Mr Trump says later: "So, what do we got to pay for this?" Mr Trump is heard saying "pay with cash" but it is not clear if he is suggesting to do so or not do so. (AMI), which owns the National Enquirer. McDougal, who was Playmate of the Month in December 1997 and Playmate of the Year in 1998, alleges that she had a 10-month romantic affair with Trump in 2006.

During the campaign, the Trump team denied any knowledge of the deal between McDougal and American Media, the magazine's parent company. His new-found willingness to share details of his work will rattle the president. "This is what I first predicted in early April before the Federal Bureau of Investigation search warrants were executed-that ultimately Michael Cohen would flip on the president".

Last week, Giuliani said the recording would prove that "the President said it has to be done correctly and it has to be done by check".

About a dozen audio recordings were seized and passed to federal prosecutors.

Cohen told ABC News in an interview released on Jul 2 that his family and the country commanded his "first loyalty", fuelling that speculation. He has since become the Trump Organization's chief financial officer and one of the president's closest business confidants (alongside Jason Greenblatt, who was Trump's in-house legal counsel before the president named him as a special diplomatic envoy to the Middle East). Davis and Giuliani did not respond to a request for further comment. And that could be of interest to investigators looking into whether Cohen violated election laws by orchestrating hush money payouts. Then there is Stormy Daniels, the adult entertainer who claims to have slept with Trump and then took $130,000 to keep quiet.

In May, President Trump admitted he had reimbursed Mr Cohen for a payment he made to hush up her claims.

The president has denied having the affairーor any knowledge of the payments.

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