Michael Cohen, the former personal lawyer and “fixer” for Donald Trump, entered guilty pleas to eight charges in a New York federal court on Tuesday — and he directly connected Donald Trump to at least two of his now-admitted crimes, according to a report in the New York Times. Cohen admitted under oath that Trump ordered him to make six-figure “hush money” payoffs to pornographic actress Stormy Daniels and Playboy Magazine centerfold model Karen McDougal.
Both women have said in their own lawsuits against Cohen that they had sexual relationships with Trump in 2006, as the Inquisitr has reported, the year after Trump married his third and current wife, the former Melania Knauss. Cohen in his plea told the court that he made the payoffs to the two women in 2016, when Trump was a candidate for president, “for the principal purpose of influencing the election.”
In his plea, Cohen did not name Trump, saying only that “a candidate for federal office” instructed him to arrange the payments, according to Bloomberg News. But Cohen’s own lawyer, Lanny Davis, confirmed that the “candidate” was indeed Trump.
“Today (Cohen) stood up and testified under oath that Donald Trump directed him to commit a crime by making payments to two women for the principal purpose of influencing an election,” Davis wrote on his Twitter account Tuesday. “If those payments were a crime for Michael Cohen, then why wouldn’t they be a crime for Donald Trump?”
In a statement reported by NBC News, Daniels hailed the confessions by Cohen, saying that they had “vindicated” her and her lawyer, Michael Avenatti, who have been suing Trump and Cohen over the “hush” deal since March.
“Michael and I are vindicated and we look forward to the apologies from the people who claimed we were wrong,” Daniels said — adding comments later on her Twitter account.
Avenatti also took to his Twitter feed, saying that the Daniels lawsuit against Trump — which had been put on hold by a federal judge in Los Angeles since April due to the ongoing New York investigation into Cohen’s activities, as the New York Times reported — can now proceed, and that Trump himself must now sit for a deposition.
“The developments of today will permit us to have the stay lifted in the civil case and should also permit us to proceed with an expedited deposition of Trump under oath about what he knew, when he knew it, and what he did about it,” Avenatti wrote. “We will disclose it all to the public.”