Michael Cohen to Jail

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Attorney and vortex of criminal corruption Michael Cohen has reached a plea deal with federal prosecutors who have been investigating his business dealings and the payments he reportedly made to women on behalf of Donald Trump, according to multiple reports.

Cohen pleaded guilty to eight federal felony counts, including tax evasion, making a false statement to a financial institution, and making an excessive campaign contribution on October 27, 2016, according to multiple reports. Cohen faces anywhere between 46 and 63 months in prison, and agreed not to challenge any sentence handed down within that timeframe.


It remains to be seen whether Cohen will continue to cooperate with federal investigators on any other pending cases, including those being investigated by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. It was Mueller’s office that first alerted the U.S. Attorney’s office of Cohen’s alleged financial crimes.

In the months leading up to his plea deal, Cohen had reportedly told acquaintances that he expected to be arrested “any day now.”

Prior to his guilty plea, Cohen indicated that he was, in fact, considering flipping on Trump, his longtime frenemy and former professional patron. In an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos in July, Cohen asserted that his family “[has] my first loyalty and always will”—a far cry from his earlier insistence that he’d “take a bullet” for the president.


Which isn’t to say that Cohen’s legal troubles are over. As a onetime member of the president’s innermost circle of advisers, Cohen might still find himself in Mueller’s crosshairs down the line.

Cohen is expected to appear in a Manhattan federal courthouse at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday to officially enter his plea, and share details about the agreement.


UPDATE, 5:16 PM ET: Cohen also revealed that, at the “direction of the candidate”—a reference to Trump—to pay $130,000 to an individual to keep them quiet, “for the principal purpose of influencing the [2016] election.” He did not identify the candidate, but on the same day as the one referenced in the count, Cohen wired $130,000 to Stormy Daniels’ then-lawyer Keith Davidson.


Additionally, Cohen admitted to making a $150,000 illegal contribution—the same amount as what was paid to Karen McDougal, who also alleged that she had an affair with Trump. Prosecutors said the payments were made to prevent their recipients from disclosing “alleged affairs with the candidate.”


The hearing ended with Cohen being released on a $500,000 bond, and the judge set his sentencing for December 12.

UPDATE, 6:51 PM ET: You can read the U.S. Attorney’s 22-page court filing in the Cohen case below.


This is a developing story and will be updated as new information is made available.