Wednesday, 17 October 2018
Latest news
Main » New York AG plans criminal investigation into Michael Cohen's taxes

New York AG plans criminal investigation into Michael Cohen's taxes

26 August 2018

Weisselberg was called to testify before a federal grand jury. He got his start in the family business by working as an accountant for Trump's father and real estate magnate Fred Trump in the 1970s.

Prosecutors reached a similar immunity deal with David Pecker, the publisher of National Enquirer magazine, the Journal reported Thursday.

In the immediate wake of the news, legal analyst Harry Litman, a former US attorney, told MSNBC there is now "a sense that the dam is breaking over the last week and people are rushing in from all sides".

The Trump Organization's finance boss, Allen Weisselberg, has reportedly been granted legal immunity in the probe into Michael Cohen.

He also predicted the report will show the president did nothing wrong and if so, he and his legal team will admit he was very fair.

And aside from Mr Trump, he is perhaps best qualified to answer two of the big questions about the businessman-turned-president over the years: Is he really worth $US10 billion, as he claims, and what is in his tax returns?

Despite the momentary levity, though, Trump is increasingly frustrated and isolated as the investigations that have long dogged his White House plunge into the personal territory he once declared off-limits. The Trump Organization could be entangled in two possible criminal investigations in NY.

Federal campaign finance law limits individual donations to $2,700 per election, requires the disclosure of any donation over $200, and defines a contribution as anything of value given, loaned or advanced to influence a federal election. It's the most direct accusation of wrongdoing leveled against Trump to date - the sort of allegation that, if borne out by the evidence, could result in felony charges against any candidate short of a sitting president.

Elon Musk Tears Up over Tesla Turmoil, 'No Sleep or Ambien'
Musk said he wrote the tweet regarding taking Tesla private as he drove himself on the way to the airport in his Tesla Model S. Tesla burnt through $3.4 billion of cash last year and has said it expects to invest another $2.5 billion this year.

"He plays an integral part in the Trump Organization's growth and continued financial success", Ivanka Trump said in an emailed statement to The Wall Street Journal in 2016. In their conversation, Cohen told Trump that he had discussed buying the rights to McDougal's story with Weisselberg.

Rudy Giuliani, a lawyer for the president, has said the payment to McDougal and a $130,000 payment to adult-film performer Stormy Daniels were a personal matter and were not subject to campaign finance law.

The Trump Organization officials listed in the filings inflated that total to $420,000, prosecutors said, which would be paid to Cohen in installments of $35,000 for a monthly retainer fee throughout 2017.

Mr Trump has repeatedly denied collusion with Russian Federation, and Russia denies involvement in the 2016 election. A co-operation deal between Weisselberg and prosecutors could be damaging to the president given the executive's longtime role in Trump's business affairs.

A person close to the Trump family who requested anonymity to describe private discussions said Weisselberg is viewed with the highest respect by family, calling him "truly a class act".

"If anyone is looking for a good lawyer, I would strongly suggest that you don't retain the services of Michael Cohen!" the president tweeted Wednesday morning.

There is no indication their cooperation extends beyond the scope of the Cohen probe. It sounds like Weisselberg is the kind of person who might be able to actually help prosecutors get to the truth, in theory, here.

New York AG plans criminal investigation into Michael Cohen's taxes