Thx for posting, our friend Kyle Griffin gives us this tidbit.
I am posting another recap…reviewing again (and again) all the nuances of the 3 briefs that were filed. We know these can have devastating effects of the president. Here’s how…
The documents were stunning, even for 2018.
In brief No. 1, Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office argues that Paul Manafort breached his cooperation agreement with the government by lying to the FBI and the Special Counsel’s Office in the course of 12 meetings. The brief oozes a level of confidence notable even among professionally hubristic prosecutors: Mueller says he’s ready to present witnesses and documents, and that he gave Manafort’s lawyers an opportunity to refute the evidence but they could not. Mueller is sure he has the receipts.
According to the brief, Manafort lied about his communications with the reputed Russian intelligence agent Konstantin Kilimnik, whom Mueller has scrutinized as a possible conduit between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. Although Mueller’s brief is heavily redacted, it’s clear that Manafort minimized the frequency, duration, and subject of his meetings with Kilimnik. Mueller has emails contradicting Manafort’s description of those meetings, which—we can infer from the unredacted snippets—related to the Trump campaign’s interactions with Russian interests. Mueller also asserts that Manafort lied about some of the payments he received and about an investigation in another district—possibly, based on the context, the Southern District of New York investigation of Michael Cohen and the president. Finally, and of great concern to the White House, Mueller claims that Manafort lied about his contacts with the Trump administration before his guilty plea, and that text messages, documents, and witnesses prove that he was in contact with administration officials.
Michael Cohen exits federal court after entering a guilty plea on November 29, 2018.
In brief No. 2, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York asks a federal judge to sentence the former Trump attorney Michael Cohen to a “substantial term of imprisonment”—meaning between three and four years. Last week, Cohen’s lawyers filed a brief lauding their client’s cooperation with the Special Counsel’s Office, the Southern District of New York, and the New York attorney general, downplaying the significance of his crimes and asking the court to sentence Cohen to probation. Such gambits are tricky: Defense lawyers must thread the needle between praising their client’s cooperation and seeking leniency enough to sway the judge, but not doing this so effusively that they trigger a prosecutorial rebuttal. Here, Cohen’s lawyers’ pirouette turned into a disastrous face-plant.
The prosecutors’ rebuttal of Cohen’s sentencing brief is one of the more livid denunciations I’ve seen in more than two decades of federal criminal practice. The Southern District concedes that Cohen provided some information to it, to the special counsel, and to the New York attorney general. But Cohen refused to cooperate fully; he declined to engage in a full debriefing about everything he knew or to commit to ongoing meetings, and he only spilled about the things he’d already admitted in his plea. That’s not how cooperation works. In this game, you either cooperate fully or you shut up; there is no middle ground. It’s not surprising that Cohen’s stance angered the notoriously proud Southern District prosecutors.
The New York prosecutors blast Cohen’s “rose-colored view of the seriousness of his crimes,” accusing him of a “pattern of deception that permeated his professional life.” Prosecutors portray Cohen as stubbornly obstructing his own accountant to cheat at taxes, even refusing to pay for accounting work that raised inconvenient issues he wanted suppressed. When it comes to Cohen’s campaign-finance violations, the prosecutors’ fury leaps off the page. Cohen, they say, schemed to pay for two women’s stories (Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, we now know) in violation of campaign-finance laws in order to influence the 2016 election, and did so “in coordination with and at the direction of Individual-1”—that is, the president of the United States. As the brief puts it:
While many Americans who desired a particular outcome to the election knocked on doors, toiled at phone banks, or found any number of other legal ways to make their voices heard, Cohen sought to influence the election from the shadows. He did so by orchestrating secret and illegal payments to silence two women who otherwise would have made public their alleged extramarital affairs with Individual-1. In the process, Cohen deceived the voting public by hiding alleged facts that he believed would have had a substantial effect on the election.
If the Southern District’s fury at Cohen is notable, its explicit accusation that President Trump directed and coordinated campaign-finance violations is simply stunning. The prosecutors’ openness suggests that they are sure of their evidence and have mostly finished collecting it. It’s a sign of a fully developed, late-game investigation of the president’s role, one that may soon make its way to Congress.
And that brings us to brief No. 3: Special Counsel Mueller’s separate sentencing brief in Cohen’s lying-to-Congress case. He does not recommend a sentence but informs the court about the nature of Cohen’s assistance to his office. Mueller discloses that Cohen has “taken significant steps to mitigate his criminal conduct” by pleading guilty to lying to Congress and meeting with the special counsel seven times to discuss his own conduct and other “core topics under investigation.” That includes information about multiple cases of contact between other Trump-campaign officials and the Russian government, and about Cohen’s contact with the White House in 2017 and 2018, suggesting an ongoing inquiry into obstruction of justice. Most significant, the special counsel indicates that Cohen “described the circumstances of preparing and circulating his response to the congressional inquiries, while continuing to accept responsibility for the false statements within it.” That statement suggests that the special counsel believes that someone in the Trump administration knew of, and approved in advance, Cohen’s lies to Congress. That’s explosive, and potentially impeachable if Trump himself is implicated.
The president said on Twitter that Friday’s news “totally clears the President. Thank you!” It does not. Manafort and Cohen are in trouble, and so is Trump. The special counsel’s confidence in his ability to prove Manafort a liar appears justified, which leaves Manafort facing what amounts to a life sentence without any cooperation credit. The Southern District’s brief suggests that Cohen’s dreams of probation are not likely to come true. All three briefs show the special counsel and the Southern District closing in on President Trump and his administration. They’re looking into campaign contact with Russia, campaign-finance fraud in connection with paying off an adult actress, and participation in lying to Congress. A Democratic House of Representatives, just days away, strains at the leash to help. The game’s afoot.
The discussions (on Sunday talk shows and beyond) surrounding what is most troubling for T n’ Co, looks to which of the Sentencing memo’s could be of most harm to T. Sen Angus King (ME-I) thinks that it is the Flynn memo…because of the extensive meetings Flynn had with Mueller, 19 of them.
And because, "King said. "Flynn was, as they say in Hamilton, in the room where it happens."
Sen King should know…he’s on the Judicial committee.
“The filing last week that should be the most troubling to the White House weren’t the ones made on Friday, but the ones made with regard to General Flynn earlier in the week,” King said, referring to separate filings, one of which recommended “substantial” prison time for Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer and longtime fixer.
King, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said that “Robert Mueller felt that [Flynn’s] cooperation has been of such an extent that he recommended no jail time,” which apparently caused Mueller to give Flynn “a kind of prosecutorial pardon, if you will.”
King went on to point out Flynn’s potential for providing extensive information about Trump’s campaign, that included “nineteen meetings with the special counsel, and a lot of redacted pieces in the filing that was made last week.”
“That’s the one I think that really raises some very difficult questions that go to the heart of the question of whether there were relationships between the Trump campaign, President Trump, and the Russian government during the campaign in 2016,” King said. "Flynn was, as they say in Hamilton, in the room where it happens."
More Sunday show banter…from Watergate reporter Carl Bernstein
Watergate reporter Carl Bernstein said Sunday that President Trump has been cornered for the first time in his life.
“He is boxed in by Mueller and the people around him know that he is and it’s on the question of … possible collusion with Russia and unquestionably a massive obstruction of justice that is now demonstrable for all to see, led by the president of the United States to cover up whatever the dealings of himself, his family, his aides were with Russia,” Bernstein told CNN’s “Reliable Sources” Sunday, following several bombshell legal filings last week by Robert Mueller’s special counsel team regarding people close to the president."
“It certainly looks like they are the kind of offense that would call for impeachment hearings into the conduct of the president of the United States,” Bernstein said.
The filing is very short – there’s nothing about the particulars of the deal, but, yes, Butina is definitely changing her plea. NRA execs have got to be sweating it today.
Jerome Corsi is suing Robert Mueller in federal court in the District of Columbia.
Previously, the Roger Stone acquaintance testified before the Mueller grand jury and publicly released a draft version of a criminal false statements plea with the Special Counsel’s Office – to which he refused to agree.
Now in the lawsuit, Corsi says federal authorities have unconstitutionally searched his electronic records and his phone.
However, Corsi’s claims in the lawsuit appear to contradict his role in the probe so far.
For instance, Corsi previously openly admitted he cooperated with investigators and handed over his computers. “I handed over my cell phone, signed to the FBI permission to look at all my email accounts. When the FBI was having trouble downloading my tweets and Google, I worked by phone with the FBI from Quantico so they could get access to all my tweets,” he said on a radio show last month.
The lawsuit is the latest example of pushback from individuals called upon by Mueller to provide information in the Russia probe…
Corsi is asking for more than $350 million in damages.
Here’s his filing. I’m not a lawyer, but even I can tell there’s really nothing here – just a blatant PR stunt and a bumbling attempt to muddy the waters. As the CNN excerpt above points out, his filing even directly contradicts public statements he as made on his radio show. I predict any judge assigned to this case will not take kindly to Corsi wasting the court’s time. And $350 million in damages? Really? – get out of town.
Yes to that…
A bit of a recap but the House Intel committee did NOT interview her. Under Nunes, they felt they did not need to…so this tweet refers to the Minority Report’s final recap - all the missing interviews, questions not addressed etc. (see below)
More news on Butina (also featured on Maddow’s show tonight) with her plea agreement AND the NRA.
Her charges which she is being called out on…are “Section 951 as “espionage-lite.” She has only pleaded guilty to the second count, conspiracy.”
Maria Butina, a Russian national who cultivated relationships with powerful American conservative activists, agreed Monday to plead guilty to conspiring to violate laws prohibiting covert foreign agents. As part of her agreement, which was reviewed by The Daily Beast, she has promised to cooperate with American law enforcement.
As a result of the deal, Butina will become the first Russian national since the 2016 election to plead guilty to a crime connected to efforts to influence American politics. After running a gun rights organization in Russia, she moved to the United States, where she spent years building relationships with conservatives in hopes of influencing a future Republican presidential administration. During the campaign season, she questioned then-candidate Donald Trump about sanctions; built relationships in the upper echelons of the American gun rights community; arranged for NRA leaders to travel to Moscow; and bragged that she was a channel between Team Trump and the Kremlin, as The Daily Beast first revealed.
In July of this year, Butina was arrested and charged on two counts: acting as a covert agent of a foreign government, and conspiring to break federal law by doing so. The specific charge for acting as a foreign agent is colloquially known as Section 951. It’s often confused with the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), but the two are separate. FARA bars secret foreign lobbying, while DOJ lawyers refer to Section 951 as “espionage-lite.” She has only pleaded guilty to the second count, conspiracy. The defense’s estimated sentence for this conviction, according to the plea deal, is up to six months. She has already spent almost five months in jail.
Butina, who turned 30 while incarcerated at the Alexandria Detention Center just south of Washington, has become a figure of geopolitical consequence and international intrigue. The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Twitter account made her picture its avatar, along with the hashtag #FreeMariaButina. They claimed she was a political prisoner and a victim of Russophobia. Some Americans—including Kentucky Republican Rep. Thomas Massie—gave credence to that view.
He will deny everything besides its HRC lies and it’s the DEMS fault, I can hear the tweet coming.
Here’s Natasha Bertrand (Staff writer @TheAtlantic covering national security & politics. @MSNBC contributor) describing the Butina situation and how the Russians are reacting to this…even Putin throwing out some shade towards the US.
A few maddening details about what we/Mueller may know and what we/Mueller may suspect. This short article poses what we do know…but also makes another round of conjectures that perhaps the reason that Manafort does not want to reveal too much about why he lied about or talked to K Kilimnik (@Keaton_James ) is that K is a spy…Is Manafort then one too…??
Could be …we will get a brief delay on sentencing until March 5th 2019 for Manafort.
Everything we know about Paul Manafort also suggests that he would never stop working the angles. If there was a prospect of a presidential pardon, no matter how distant, he would make a play for one. Still, I don’t think this sort of legal gamesmanship fully explains why Paul Manafort would have continued to lie to Robert Mueller, when he obviously knew the risks of misleading the Special Counsel’s Office—and when Manafort had ample personal evidence of Trump’s flakiness and indifference to the fate of loyal servants.
Of course, it’s hard to see exactly where Mueller intends to take his investigation; we must take into account the redactions in his filings and his necessary silence about matters he continues to investigate. But I think there’s a reason that he seems to care so much about Kilimnik—and Manafort’s alleged lies about him.
To recap some of the crucial plot points in the Paul Manafort story, based on my own reporting and lawsuits filed against him:
He owed millions of dollars to Oleg Deripaska, who invested in a fund that Manafort created for buying up assets in Russia and Ukraine.
Manafort was so deep in debt to Deripaska that he avoided him when the oligarch came asking for his cash in 2010.
When Manafort went to work for the Trump campaign, he suggested giving Deripaska “private briefings,” with the hopes of the Russian forgiving his debts. (All this is obliquely explained in emails obtained by The Atlantic last year.)
Perhaps Manafort’s messages about campaign access never reached Deripaska; it’s possible that this was another one of his harebrained schemes. But we know that Manafort was attempting to use Kilimnik as his interface with Deripaska.
As I have read back over Mueller’s past references to K.K. in his sundry filings, there’s one mention that stands out. Last March, almost as an aside, Mueller noted that Kilimnik “has ties to a Russian intelligence service and had such ties in 2016.” Manafort would have recognized this instantly as a description of K.K., and yet he repeatedly misled the prosecutor about his relationship with him, according to Mueller.
One reason that Manafort might have lied about his contacts with K.K. could be that he doesn’t want to be vulnerable to charges greater than the ones that Mueller has already leveled against him. It’s one thing to admit to a failure to adhere to the Foreign Agents Registration Act; it’s quite another to implicate yourself in an effort to collude with a hostile regime, to admit that your closest aide is a Russian spy.
There’s been talk that Robert Mueller has reached the point in his investigation where he’s tying together loose threads. But reading through both of the special counsel’s filings yesterday, it’s striking how many threads there are. And even as we get greater evidence of contact between Trump aides and Russians, there’s still so much that remains vague or maddeningly elliptical. The bigger picture fills in, pixel by pixel, but we still don’t quite know what we’re seeing yet.
In a heavily redacted court filing Friday, Mueller laid out five lies Manafort is alleged to have told after he signed the plea agreement.
This paragraph jumps off the page:
Describing their take on the case Wednesday, Jeannie S. Rhee from the Special Counsel’s Office said Cohen provided “credible” and “valuable information” regarding “any links between a campaign and a foreign government.”
I’d give anything to know what Mueller’s team knows about these “links between a campaign and a foreign government.” Which members of the campaign were involved? How far up the chain of command did this extend? Which foreign government were they coordinating with?
It’s reassuring to know that prosecutors already have this information – I guess we just need to keep calm and soldier on while awaiting their findings.
More on the NRA connection with Alexander Torshin presiding over a lot of NRA gatherings where a LOT of money has been raised, although he only admitted to $2500. We see a lot of Senators there, and John Bolton, our current NSC head.
Makes for uncomfortable bedfellows…and the NRA angle is very much a suspicious one, particularly that Butina is charged with more than being ‘friendly’ with members.
As questions mounted last spring about two Russian operatives with ties to the National Rifle Association who tried to cultivate the Trump presidential campaign, the NRA made a rare public disclosure: The gun group said it had received about $2,500 from Russian sources. That included a single contribution “of less than $1,000” from one of the operatives, Alexander Torshin—a high-level official from Vladimir Putin’s party who federal prosecutors say directed a conspiracy by Russian agent Maria Butina to influence American politics. The NRA said the money was dues for a “life membership” paid by Torshin, who years earlier had forged connections with NRA leaders.
After the United States sanctioned Torshin and other Russian officials in April, the NRA reiterated in response to a Senate inquiry that Torshin had made no other contributions and was “not a member of any major donor program.”
The House Intelligence Committee, soon to be chaired by California Rep. Adam Schiff, plans to scrutinize “two major threads” regarding the NRA, a committee aide said. Those include whether Torshin and Butina were part of efforts to establish a backchannel to the Kremlin, and “whether Russian money was flowing into the NRA for the purpose of supporting Trump’s election.”
Butina, who was charged in July with conspiracy by federal prosecutors, is about to finalize a plea deal and has agreed to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. Investigators on Capitol Hill will be watching closely to see if she shares information contradicting any NRA claims in documents the group has provided to Congress, a second Senate source said.
As Mother Jones previously documented, Torshin cultivated ties with NRA leaders for years, attending six NRA annual conferences between 2011 and 2016. Now, additional photos we uncovered show Torshin hanging out with top NRA leaders both publicly and privately during the group’s annual conference held in Houston, Texas, in May 2013—including during lucrative fundraising events. Torshin posted the photos online around the time of the conference, though it is unclear who took them. They show Torshin at a gathering with NRA leaders in a hotel suite, at an NRA fundraising dinner and auction, and attending a ceremony for elite “Golden Ring of Freedom” donors giving at least $1 million, whose trappings include custom gold jackets and an NRA “liberty bell.”
Among other NRA leaders, Torshin is pictured in Houston with then-outgoing president and current board member David Keene, who traveled to Moscow later that fall and again in 2015 to attend events hosted by Butina’s own fledgling gun group, the Right to Bear Arms. Also appearing with Torshin in the Houston photos are incoming NRA president James W. Porter and then-NRA operations director Kyle Weaver, who worked under NRA executive vice president Wayne LaPierre, as the Trace reported, including overseeing grassroots fundraising. Torshin also hobnobbed with top Ring of Freedom donor Joe Gregory and former Republican House Majority Leader and longtime NRA ally Tom DeLay.
We’re getting a lot of these recaps…which synthesize the known facts and implications for these other players. We just want to know how this whole dragnet may go down…Read on.
The pace of developments shows no sign of slowing, either. Thursday apparently will see a guilty plea from alleged Russian spy Maria Butina, whose role in the 2016 election and ties to gun-rights groups like the National Rifle Association remain perplexing.
CNN’s John Berman has described it as the “12 days of Mueller.” The filings thus far, taken together, have clarified where Mueller is heading, and appear to help delineate who is likely on the special counsel’s “naughty list” this holiday season. The past two weeks of rapid-fire filings, court appearances, and news reports show several people and entities potentially in Mueller’s sights.
Here are the reasons you should be concerned if you’re:
Former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s original plea deal made clear that he called Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak at the direction of a “very senior” transition official, which media reports have identified as presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner. Subsequent court filings have made clear that Flynn’s early cooperation encouraged others to cooperate as well. That likely includes at least K.T. McFarland, another national security aide, whose memory reportedly evolved after Flynn’s plea. Her revised memory likely also ratchets up the scrutiny of Kushner’s role on the campaign, where he was in the room for the infamous June 2016 Trump Tower meeting, and the transition, where he reportedly tried to create a communications backchannel with Russia and met with the head of the Russian development bank, Sergei Gorkov. Mueller has outlined in recent court filings his view that “senior government leaders should be held to the highest standards,” which sounds like an as-yet-unfired warning shot against other “senior government leaders.” Kushner, as a senior White House adviser, now fits that bill.
Donald Trump, Jr.
Michael Cohen’s plea agreement never mentions the presidential son by name, but it potentially implicates Don Jr. in at least two critical areas. First, vis-à-vis the Trump Tower Moscow deal, Cohen says he kept the Trump Organization and family members up to date on the conversations with Russia, which appears to undercut Don Jr.’s testimony to Congress that he didn’t know much about the proposed development and, besides, the deal never went very far anyway. Cohen, and thus the special counsel, appears to possess evidence that both halves of that dismissal were false. With the Cohen plea agreement 10 days ago, Mueller has made clear that he considers lying to Congress within his purview.
Second, and more intriguing, is how Cohen discusses the November 2015 approach by a Russian intermediary offering “political synergy” with the campaign. One of the most confounding puzzle pieces of the investigation remains publicist Rob Goldstone’s email initiating the infamous June 2016 Trump Tower meeting, at which Don Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort met with Russians who had promised to help the campaign. Goldstone’s email said, “This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump.” We’ve never known what “part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump” meant specifically, but the way Goldstone phrased it seems to imply that such help wouldn’t come as a surprise to Don Jr. The Cohen plea agreement now lays the groundwork that such help might have been quite well known inside Trumpworld, given that 2015 overture. The offer of “political synergy,” a synonym that sounds a lot like “collusion” or “conspiracy,” makes it much harder to imagine a naive acceptance of the Russian help come June 2016.
President Donald Trump aka Individual-1
While the president tried to brush off recent developments as “peanut stuff” Tuesday night, the potential criminal liability focused on the White House seems to grow with nearly every court filing. Prosecutors have now made clear their belief that the president himself, aka “Individual-1,” directed Michael Cohen to commit campaign finance violations, a felony. Given Cohen’s general slipperiness in court, they’re almost certainly basing that allegation on precise documentary evidence, potentially even the covert recordings that Cohen liked to make. On Wednesday, SDNY reached a deal with National Enquirer publisher AMI that explicitly states that the Cohen payments were intended to prevent a story about Trump’s alleged affair with Karen McDougal from “influencing the election.”
The court filings contain growing signs, too, that Mueller could be building not just a case around conspiracy during the 2016 campaign, but also about “expansive obstruction.” A case like that could include the possible coordination of lies following Russia revelations, such as Cohen’s in front of Congress. A specific line from the special counsel’s filing in Cohen’s case also jumps out: “By publicly presenting this false narrative, the defendant deliberately shifted the timeline of what had occurred in hopes of limiting the investigations into possible Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election.” It’s not hard to imagine that same line cut-and-pasted into a future obstruction case regarding Donald Trump’s personal handling of a false narrative put out by the White House after reports first surfaced of the June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower. Maybe the firing of FBI director James Comey—which has seemed central to any obstruction investigation—will ultimately end up just part of a larger, longer, more coordinated attempt to mislead and misdirect attention around the Russia investigation. After all, there’s historical precedent for this: Part of the Watergate articles of impeachment charged Richard Nixon with “making or causing to be made false or misleading public statements for the purpose of deceiving the people of the United States.”
The Trump Organization
There are increasing signs that the Trump Organization—the family business built around the Trump brand—might be in its crosshairs. Corporate malfeasance expert Kurt Eichenwald, who literally wrote the book on Enron, points out how closely the Trump Organization appears to be implicated in Cohen’s hush money payments, and the apparently narrow circle of people who could have participated in them. Cohen’s plea deal also alleges that the Trump Organization’s business was closely tied into the Trump Tower Moscow project; BuzzFeed broke word that the company had floated the idea of offering the $50 million penthouse to Putin himself. It’s been known, too, for some time that Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg has been cooperating with investigators. Between him and Cohen—and Cohen’s voluminous seized records—a clear trail may appear for prosecutors to follow.
Jerome Corsi and Associates
The alleged criminal liability of conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi has already been laid out in the aborted plea agreement that he leaked after the deal with Mueller’s office fell apart.
Even after Wednesday’s prison sentence, which settles the nine (nine!) felonies he has currently pleaded guilty to, there’s some reason to believe that Cohen might not be out of the woods. The Southern District of New York in its sentencing filing made clear its unhappiness that Cohen didn’t fully cooperate, providing a full and complete list of the crimes he’d participated in over the years. As they wrote, “Cohen repeatedly declined to provide full information about the scope of any additional criminal conduct in which he may have engaged or had knowledge.”
Business partners of Michael Flynn
Given that the court filings reference Flynn’s business work—not the Trump campaign—and that part of Flynn’s plea agreement focused on his plotting with the Turkish government, it appears one of the undisclosed criminal investigations he has helped with involves those interactions.
The Ukrainian businessman who served as Paul Manafort’s onetime business partner—and alleged Russian intelligence asset—is all over the Manafort court filings in a way that makes clear the special counsel has a unique, focused interest in him and his role in the campaign. He’s already been implicated in Manafort’s alleged witness tampering scheme, but there’s no reason to think Mueller is done with him. Franklin Foer, who has written the most in-depth coverage of Manafort’s world, says Kilimnik’s appearance in the new documents “foreshadow[s] an ominous return.”
The Russian politician and banker has been linked in court documents to Maria Butina, the alleged spy likely to plead guilty on Thursday. Torshin appeared to “handle” Butina, building ties to the NRA; her guilty plea will likely shed additional light on Torshin’s role, particularly if she provides active cooperation with investigators.
Won’t that be an interesting discussion…#FormerLawyerSeekingRedemption
Michael Cohen, the former lawyer and fixer for President Donald Trump, is willing to reveal publicly what he knows about his former client once Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation is complete and findings are released, Cohen’s lawyer said Wednesday.
“There will come a time after Mr. Mueller is done with his work that Michael Cohen will be sitting in front of a microphone before a congressional committee and what he has to say about the truth will be judged by the members of Congress listening and then will be up to people to decide whether he has got the facts or not,” Cohen attorney and spokesman Lanny Davis said in an interview on Bloomberg Radio’s “Sound On.”
Cohen, who was sentenced today to three years in prison, expects to testify about what he knows in front of Congress at some point, said Davis, who was unwilling to detail what Cohen knows about Trump and Russian election meddling.
The special counsel’s team interviewed Cohen for about 70 hours, but little is known about what he shared. Cohen has admitted to lying to Congress and Mueller’s investigators about the timing of a proposed Trump tower in Moscow and Trump’s involvement in the project. Davis said that false testimony was shared with the White House before Cohen submitted it to Congress and it is possible Trump was aware at the time that Cohen would make false statements.
Lanny Davis, an attorney representing Cohen in his ongoing legal battles with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, told Bloomberg Radio’s “Sound On" that while Trump did not direct Cohen specifically to lie to Congress, he knew his lawyer’s plans and did not direct him to tell the truth.
"Mr. Trump and the White House knew that Michael Cohen would be testifying falsely to Congress and did not tell him not to," Davis told Bloomberg News.
Davis is saying Trump knew ahead of time that Cohen would lie to Congress on his behalf. He did nothing to stop it. And afterwards, he continued to keep Cohen’s crime of lying to Congress a secret.
I’m not sure here – and maybe someone with a legal background can weigh in – but if this is true, does it make Trump an accessory to Cohen’s crime of lying to Congress? – in the same way that it would make me an accessory to a crime if I knew a friend was going to rob a bank and I did nothing about it and then after he robbed the bank, I continued to keep the crime a secret.
That’s the full extent of my legal expertise here based on watching 127 episodes of “Law & Order.”
No real legal experience but worked as paralegal briefly …BUT my analytic side recalls that this could be considered ‘witness tampering’ on T’s part, and therefore obstruction of justice.
And haven’t they said, that many of the T n’ Co people who went before the Senate and Congressional Intel groups all lied on paper, and in front of Congress, as if to get their story straight - on whether Flynn had indeed spoken to Kislyak to offer repeal of sanctions, (KT McFarlane, Kushner, Junior…) and Mueller essentially knew this was a lie, and sort of has them in a big one. It was T that held out the pardon power to set this up.
This also is considered ‘witness tampering’ and obstruction of justice because ultimately a pardon would be held out to save them in the end.
They definitely have T on this obstruction of justice.
It was Cohen who did not give a straight story right off the bat, because it was felt T was going to pardon him. When T started shaming Cohen in public, Cohen had a ‘come to Jesus’ moment and decided to be the patriot and save his family. Cohen was never given a plea as a cooperating witness because he lied at first (for T) and then walked that back.
Cohen has still not given all he knows on a LOT of subjects, one of them being, did he indeed travel to Prague to negotiate or pay Russian operatives on the hacking. This was at a time when Manafort had to leave the campaign quickly when it was discovered he was paid royally by the Ukrainian leader on paperwork found in the rubble (my condensed version of it.) If you follow this Steele Memo version of it, Cohen did act as an emissary for this treasonous crime.
This is my version of it…legal or not @Keaton_James
US vs Mariia Butina Plea agreement doc
It would appear as though she was reporting or intending to report directly to the Russian President.
It would appear that Alexander Torshin is the Russian Offical in this plea agreement.
As part of her plea, Butina admitted seeking to establish and use “unofficial lines of communication with Americans having influence over U.S. politics” for the benefit of the Russian government, through a person fitting the description of sanctioned Russian central banker Alexander Torshin, prosecutor Erik Kenerson said.