clear
Tuesday October 23rd, 2018 4:30PM

FBI raid sought Cohen's communications with Trump campaign

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

The FBI agents who raided the offices of President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, sought records of his communications with the Trump campaign as part of what appeared to be an examination of his efforts to quell potentially damaging information about the candidate.

A search warrant used in the raid Monday sought bank records, business records on Cohen's dealing in the taxi industry, information on payments made to a former Playboy model and a porn actress who say they had affairs with Trump, and Cohen's communications with the Trump campaign, according to people familiar with the investigation. They spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the confidential details.

Several media organizations, including The New York Times and The Washington Post, also reported, citing unidentified sources, that the warrant also authorized agents to seize records related to the "Access Hollywood" tape, on which Trump was recorded making comments about kissing and groping women.

After the public release of the recording in October 2016, Trump dismissed his comments as "locker room talk." In the weeks after, several women said publicly that Trump had subjected them to unwanted sexual advances.

FBI and Justice Department officials in Washington and New York have refused to discuss the case publicly, or say what crimes they are investigating.

Cohen, through his lawyer and in public statements, has denied wrongdoing. Trump has called the raids a "witch hunt" and "an attack on our country."

Public corruption prosecutors in the U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan are trying to determine, according to one person familiar with the investigation, if there was any fraud related to payments to Karen McDougal and Stormy Daniels.

McDougal, a former Playmate, was paid $150,000 in the summer of 2016 by the parent company of the National Enquirer under an agreement that gave it the exclusive rights to her story and would penalize her for speaking publicly about the affair. The magazine didn't publish the story.

Cohen has acknowledged that he paid Daniels $130,000 in exchange for her promise not to talk publicly about an affair she said she had with Trump.

The warrants also sought business records on Cohen's dealings in the taxi industry, according to one of the people with knowledge of the investigation who spoke with The Associated Press. Cohen owns several medallions for New York City yellow cabs that allow them to pick up passengers on the street.

The interim U.S. Attorney in Manhattan, Geoffrey Berman, who would ordinarily be overseeing the investigation, has been recused from involvement, leaving his top deputy, Robert Khuzami, in charge of the probe. Khuzami, a former head of enforcement at the Securities and Exchange Commission, only joined the U.S. Attorney's office in January after he was brought in by Berman, who himself is still waiting to see if Trump will nominate him to have the job permanently.

Several former officials at the Federal Election Commission have said that payments made to women in order to effectively buy their silence about Trump could have violated campaign finance laws because it may amount to an unreported campaign donation.

Cohen has said neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was involved in the payments. He said he paid Daniels with money he had borrowed from a bank as part of a home equity line of credit.

The White House has consistently said Trump denies the affair.

___

Balsamo reported from Los Angeles. Associated Press writers Tom Hays and Jake Pearson in New York, and Chad Day, Eric Tucker, Tom LoBianco and Catherine Lucey in Washington contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Business, AP Business - Personal Finance
© Copyright 2018 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Report: Missouri Gov. Greitens initiated unwanted sex acts
A woman has testified that Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens initiated a physically aggressive unwanted sexual encounter with her and threatened to distribute a partially nude photo of her if she spoke about it
11:10PM ( 6 minutes ago )
FBI raid sought Cohen's communications with Trump campaign
The FBI agents who raided the offices of Donald Trump's personal lawyer sought records of his communications with the Trump campaign
11:09PM ( 6 minutes ago )
Mets' Travis d'Arnaud tears elbow ligament, surgery possible
New York Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud on the disabled list for the fifth straight year, and the injury appears to be significant
11:02PM ( 13 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
California joins Guard border mission, shuns Trump's message
California Gov. Jerry Brown accepts President Donald Trump's call to send the National Guard to the Mexican border
10:03PM ( 1 hour ago )
Arizona teachers demanding raise protest at schools
Arizona teachers in red shirts protested outside schools to show solidarity in their demand for higher salaries
9:36PM ( 1 hour ago )
Zuckerberg says regulation inevitable. Is Congress up to it?
What Zuckerberg's testimony revealed: How little Congress knows about Facebook
8:30PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Crash kills 257 in Algeria's deadliest aviation disaster
A military transport plane crash in Algeria that killed 257 people has become the country's worst aviation disaster
6:27PM ( 4 hours ago )
Zuckerberg testimony reveals lawmaker confusion on Facebook
What Zuckerberg's testimony revealed: How little Congress knows about Facebook
6:22PM ( 4 hours ago )
Banks and technology stocks fall; oil rises to 3-year high
US stock indexes finish mostly lower as banks and technology and health care companies fall, but energy companies rise as oil prices hit a three-year high
5:52PM ( 5 hours ago )
AP Business
FIFA looks for $25 billion, 12-year deal for new tournaments
FIFA is planning to team up with Saudi Arabian, Chinese and American investors in a $25 billion, 12-year deal that could add two major international tournaments to an already crowded soccer calendar
5:59AM ( 17 hours ago )
China president's conciliatory trade gesture raises optimism
China's president offers US possible trade concessions, raising hopes for end to standoff
5:28PM ( 1 day ago )
Letter to Panama's president from Trump Organization lawyers
The text of the letter from the Britton & Iglesias law firm to Panamanian President Juan Carlos Varela, as translated by The Associated Press
3:41PM ( 2 days ago )
AP Business - Personal Finance
Mets' Travis d'Arnaud tears elbow ligament, surgery possible
New York Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud on the disabled list for the fifth straight year, and the injury appears to be significant
11:02PM ( 13 minutes ago )
Tigers' Zimmermann bruises jaw when hit by Kipnis' liner
Detroit Tigers pitcher Jordan Zimmermann bruised the right side of his jaw when hit in the face by a line drive off the bat of Cleveland's Jason Kipnis and left after two batters in the Indians' 5-1 win
11:01PM ( 15 minutes ago )
Butler, Towns lead T-wolves past Nuggets in OT, to playoffs
Butler, Towns lead Timberwolves past Nuggets 112-106 in overtime, to playoffs for 1st time since '04
10:59PM ( 17 minutes ago )
The Latest: T'Wolves clinch final playoff berth in overtime
Minnesota beat Denver 112-106 in overtime on Wednesday night to clinch the final spot in the Western Conference playoffs
10:51PM ( 25 minutes ago )
76ers win 16th straight, earn 3 seed in romp over Bucks
Joel Embiid and JJ Redick watched from the bench, Ben Simmons had a scoreless first half and the Philadelphia 76ers still won their 16th consecutive game, thumping the Milwaukee Bucks 130-95 to clinch the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference
10:28PM ( 48 minutes ago )