Trump defends Russian Federation business dealings as USA investigation widens

Trump defends Russian Federation business dealings as USA investigation widens

Trump defends Russian Federation business dealings as USA investigation widens

It was a potentially lucrative deal for Trump's company, handing it $US4 million in upfront fees plus possibly millions more from a cut on everything from food and banquet fees to spa charges.

In court in August, he told a judge that he violated campaign-finance laws at the president's direction and, on Thursday, said he lied to Congress to remain consistent with Trump's messaging on the campaign trail.

Cohen's lawyers - Guy Petrillo and Amy Lester - said Cohen and his family have faced threats of physical harm, which have been referred to authorities.

A former prosecutor who previously worked with Robert Mueller at the US attorney's office in Washington, D.C. suggested that Michael Cohen could possibly have tapes linking Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr.to alleged collusion with Russian Federation. Cohen "also provided the NYAG with documents concerning a separate open inquiry", according to the filing.

Asked why he hired Cohen in the first place if he's such "a bum", Trump replied that the lawyer had once done him "a favor". His sentencing in that case is scheduled for December 12.

"Michael Cohen is a liar", Giuliani said.

Trump has repeatedly denied that he had any financial ties to Russian Federation during his 2016 campaign, and has vehemently dismissed the suggestion that there was any collusion between his campaign and the Kremlin.

"Arising out of Michael's concern that his entry into a traditional cooperation agreement would likely delay his sentencing, as investigations and trials unfold and conclude, he respectfully declined to pursue conventional cooperation so that his sentencing proceeding would go forward as scheduled", Cohen's lawyers wrote. But the judge could sharply reduce the sentence because of Cohen's cooperation.

According to the plea, Cohen later discussed travelling to Moscow to jump-start the deal.

Prosecutors will file their sentencing recommendation at a later point.

Cohen Pleads Guilty to Lying to Congress About 'Moscow Project'
Michael Cohen , former personal attorney to President Donald Trump , exits federal court, November 29, 2018 in New York City. Cohen pleaded guilty in August to eight criminal charges including tax evasion, bank fraud and campaign finance violations.

Manafort pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy in September, and agreed to cooperate "fully, truthfully, completely, and forthrightly" with Mueller's ongoing "Russiagate" investigation. Cohen made the $130,000 payment to Stormy Daniels, the porn star who claims she had an affair with Trump in 2006. Trump has said recently a pardon for Manafort is not "off the table", raising questions about whether Trump telegraphed to Manafort to end his cooperation. But he quickly switched gears and effectively confirmed what Cohen had said. Over the ensuing months, he had multiple meetings with Mueller's team.

The charge was brought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating Russian interference in the presidential election, and was the result of his co-operation with that probe.

On Jan. 14, 2016, just weeks before the Republican party caucus in Iowa, Cohen emailed the office of Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov asking for help getting the Trump Tower Moscow project off the ground.

On Tuesday, Cohen pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to the U.S. Congress by writing a statement to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) "containing material false statements about the Moscow Project, including false statements about the timing of the Moscow Project, discussions with people in the Company and in Russian Federation about the Moscow Project".

Trump said Cohen is lying.

The revelation tied Trump to Russian Federation throughout much of the campaign, and suggested that the real estate developer turned politician misled the public in July 2016 when he said he had no business dealings with Russian Federation.

Donald Trump Jr.'s account of his family's real estate negotiations with powerful Russians, which he gave to Congress in 2017, contrasts with the new version of events given Thursday by his father's former fixer in federal court Thursday.

On June 9, 2016, Trump Jr., Manafort and Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, met with a Kremlin-connected lawyer at Trump Tower in NY about getting "dirt" on Democrat Hillary Clinton.

"My lawyers don't write answers, I write answers", Trump said. Cohen gave a statement to congressional committees a year ago saying the president's company pursued a project in Moscow during the Republican primary but that the plan was abandoned "for a variety of business reasons".

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: He's a weak person, and what he's trying to do is get a reduced sentence, so he's lying about a project that everybody knew about.

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