Mueller provides new details on Cohen and Manafort's lies

Michael Flynn testimony in 19 Russia probe interviews raises stakes for Trump

Michael Flynn testimony in 19 Russia probe interviews raises stakes for Trump

It was only after he pleaded guilty in August to campaign finance and other violations that he began providing credible information, the special prosecutor said.

"Totally clears the President".

Cohen has pleaded guilty in two cases - one brought by Mueller and one brought by Manhattan federal prosecutors - and admitted nine crimes, including tax evasion, lying to lawmakers and arranging payments to silence women claiming to have had affairs with Trump, to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential election.

While Cohen implicated the president in the hush payments to two women - adult film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal - in his guilty plea in August in NY, the filing on Friday marked the first time federal prosecutors officially concurred.

In the 40-page document Khuzami drew a direct link between Cohen's illegal behavior and Trump.

The payments are technically unrelated to the Russian Federation probe, but prosecutors painted a damning picture of the "extensive, deliberate, and serious criminal conduct" of Cohen - once a member of Trump's inner circle of trusted aides.

In fact, Cohen had previously conferred with Trump "about contacting the Russian government before reaching out to gauge Russia's interest in such a meeting", the Special Counsel said.

The White House similarly dismissed that filing, arguing it "says absolutely nothing about the President".

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders released a statement late Friday that said, "The government's filings in Mr. Cohen's case tell us nothing of value that wasn't already known".

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Once Trump's highly trusted aide, Cohen has met seven times with prosecutors for the special counsel who are investigating Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential election and whether anyone tied to the Trump campaign conspired with the Kremlin-run operation. He has said he did so to stay in sync with Trump's political messaging, and that he consulted with the White House while preparing to testify to Congress.

"Mr Cohen has repeatedly lied and as the prosecution has pointed out to the court, Mr Cohen is no hero", she said. The documents aren't rich with names and details, but they do reveal that both men have been less than truthful with investigators.

The court documents also mention "a contact Cohen received in 2015 from a "Russian national" seeking "synergy" between the campaign and the Russian government", according to the Post.

And it says Cohen is prepared to continue his cooperation.

Cohen, dubbed Trump's "legal fixer" in the past, also described his work in conjunction with Trump in orchestrating hush money payments to two women - a porn star and a Playboy model - who said they had sex with Trump a decade earlier.

Mueller also detailed alleged lies told by Manafort during interviews with prosecutors and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Prosecutors accused Manafort of multiple "lies" to investigators: About his contacts with administration officials even after striking a plea deal; about a debt payment; and about his interaction with a suspected Russian intelligence officer.

Cohen had been hoping prosecutors would make a similar recommendation in his case. But the NY prosecutors were unsparing in their descriptions of his conduct, saying he was motivated by "personal greed" and that he "repeatedly used his power and influence for deceptive ends". In a draft plea agreement provided to conservative operative Jerome Corsi, Mueller details how Roger Stone, who the special counsel notes was in frequent contact with Donald Trump and senior campaign officials, directed Corsi to connect with WikiLeaks about the trove of stolen materials it received from Russian Federation.

Due to his help, Mueller declined to recommend additional jail time for Cohen for lying to Congress.

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