Tags: Donald Trump | Media Bias | Russia Probe | michael cohen | david pecker | national enquirer | hush money

Report: Trump Was Present for Media, Cohen Hush Money Talks

michael cohen frowns as he tilts his head to his left
Michael Cohen (Mary Altaffer/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 13 December 2018 05:49 PM

President Donald Trump in August 2015 was in the room when former lawyer Michael Cohen and National Enquirer publisher David Pecker discussed ways Pecker's outlet could help change the narrative concerning negative coverage of Trump's relationships with women, American Media Inc., the parent company of the National Enquirer, admitted Thursday in a nonprosecution agreement with federal prosecutors.

NBC News also said AMI admitted to helping facilitate a hush payment to one of the women who claimed she had an affair with Trump ahead of the election, former Playboy model Karen McDougal.  

"Pecker offered to help deal with negative stories about that presidential candidate's relationships with women by, among other things, assisting the campaign in identifying such stories so they could be purchased and their publication avoided," AMI said per the news outlet. 

The agreement does not detail the meeting, but the fact Trump was there squarely places the president, "in the middle of a conspiracy to commit campaign finance fraud," said NBC News analyst and former assistant U.S. attorney Daniel Goldman.

Cohen on Wednesday was sentenced to three years in prison during a sentencing hearing in which he claimed he acted out of "blind loyalty" to Trump. 

He had previously pled guilty to campaign finance violations and lying to Congress.

Trump said he never directed Cohen to break the law. 

"He was a lawyer and he was supposed to know the law. It is called 'advice of counsel,' and a lawyer has a great liability if a mistake is made. That is why they get paid," he tweeted early Thursday. 

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The National Enquirer's parent company claims then-candidate Donald Trump was in the room with attorney Michael Cohen and David Pecker to discuss hush payments to women, according to an NBC News report.
michael cohen, david pecker, national enquirer, hush money
Thursday, 13 December 2018 05:49 PM
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