Michael Cohen's attorney sends letter clarifying pardon testimony

General Matthew Whitaker testifies before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on oversight of the Justice Department on Capitol Hill in Washington U.S. Feb. 8 2019. REUTERS  Jonathan Ernst  File

General Matthew Whitaker testifies before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on oversight of the Justice Department on Capitol Hill in Washington U.S. Feb. 8 2019. REUTERS Jonathan Ernst File

In an interview with CNN, however, Costello insisted that Cohen had asked him to bring up the possibility of a pardon to Giuliani, and he denied that either Giuliani or Trump had "dangled" a pardon for him.

Cohen now says he was only referring to a specific period of time in his testimony, according to a letter from his lawyer.

Congressional investigators appear to be focusing on presidential powers as a significant line of questioning in their probes.

Monico said Cohen had asked a prior lawyer to inquire about a possible pardon because Trump had "publicly dangled the possibility of pardons when commenting about ongoing investigations". 'His lawyers totally contradicted him. I said NO. He lied again!' Cohen, in his own tweet, responded, calling the president's assertion "another set of lies".

Cohen's lawyers have previously admitted that another lawyer acting on behalf of Cohen, also a lawyer, did sound out the president's lawyers.

U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker testifies before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on oversight of the Justice Department on Capitol Hill in Washington Feb. 8 2019. REUTERS  Jonathan Ernst  File

Cohen has been under fire from Republicans and Trump for testifying that he had "never asked for, nor would I accept" a pardon from the President, amid reports that Cohen's attorneys discussed the prospect of a pardon with Trump's legal team while Cohen was still a part of the Trump joint defense agreement. He is going to jail for committing several crimes, including lying to Congress about the timeline of a Trump Organization effort to build a tower in Moscow, that he says were done to protect Trump. 'But there are no plans to do so'.

They said federal prosecutors in NY say Cohen sought employment in the Trump administration - something Cohen repeatedly denied in the hearing.

Cohen is slated to begin a three-year prison sentence in May.

The House Judiciary Committee, which is conducting a probe into possible obstruction of justice, corruption and abuse of power, sent letters to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Justice Department and others for documents related to possible pardons for Cohen, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.

Cohen pleaded guilty as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation to making false statements to Congress in 2017 regarding the timeline of a Trump Tower project in Russian Federation.

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