Michael Cohen, Manhattan DA Star Witness, Says Trump Now Or I’m Out

If Manhattan prosecutors don’t indict former President Donald Trump with the grand jury they have in the next nine days, the key witness investigators used to build their entire case say he I won’t help revive it in the future.

Michael Cohen, the New York attorney for whom Trump served for many years as a trusted consignor for his family company, told The Daily Beast he wasted too much time on a case that slowly and unexpectedly It seems to go nowhere. Prosecutors only have power until the current grand jury’s term expires on April 30 to bring charges, at which point they must ask jurors who have done this in the past. six months to continue hearing the evidence — or drop the whole thing and awkwardly present it all. all again in front of 23 other jurors.

If this jury is omitted, Cohen will not be playing football. Asked if he would be willing to sit down with investigators or testify at a future trial against Trump, Cohen replied with utter exasperation.

“No. I have spent countless hours, more than 15 sessions — three of them in custody. I have provided thousands of documents that, along with my testimony, will form a valid basis for a conviction. indictment and charges,” he said.

“The fact that they haven’t done so despite all this… I’m not interested in any further investments in my time,” he said.

Cohen has been the cornerstone of the investigation since the time it was launched by the district attorney earlier. Case in point: The entire probe is named after him. Court records released a few weeks ago show Manhattan prosecutors calling the internal investigation “The Fixer,” a reference to Cohen’s role as a mob-like delivery man. Trump.

Trump relied on Cohen as his lawyer to protect his 2016 presidential campaign by transferring discreet cash payments to two women he once had sex with: the former Playboy Playmate of the Year Karen McDougal and porn star Stephanie Clifford, aka Stormy Daniels.

When former DA Cy Vance Jr realized federal prosecutors in New York would not pursue a case against Trump for election violations and fraud while he was in the White House, he launched an investigation. its own locality. Vance subpoenaed a grand jury that subpoenaed the Trump Organization on August 1, 2019 asking for records of hidden money payments, according to court filings.

Later that month, several Manhattan prosecutors drove two hours north of the city to the federal prison in Otisville, New York, where they met Cohen — one of the first interviews in the case.

Prosecutors ended up visiting him three times behind bars, and nearly a dozen times after his release, recording sweeping notes in which he explained how the Trump Organization operated as a mafia — how Trump avoids putting anything harmful in the text, instead using allusions to order his lieutenants to engage in fraud.

His documents and inside views helped prosecutors build the case against the Trump Organization and its former chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, both of whom were indicted last summer. for tax fraud. In fact, Cohen has been so helpful that Weisselberg’s lawyers are trying to dismiss the case by suggesting that the entire prosecution was a revenge plot by his former colleague.

Documents that DA Manhattan’s office shared with Weisselberg’s legal team – but remained sealed from public view – allegedly show how “prosecutors rose and fell, including DA Vance Cohen for his cooperation,” defense attorney Mary Mulligan wrote in court papers filed in February.

Defense attorneys for Weisselberg and the Trump family firm, who have exclusive access to DA investigative documents in the run-up to their upcoming trial scheduled for this summer , claimed in court papers that prosecutors “spent more time with Cohen than with any other witness. ”

Cohen gave investigators a lead and guided their subpoenas, helped them draft questions for witnesses they put before the jury, and even suggested that prosecutors target Weisselberg’s target is the “weak link” that could unmask Trump, according to court documents filed by Weisselberg’s legal team.

But considering all the publicly available evidence, Weisselberg has yet to reveal his boss. Instead of severing his deal with prosecutors, he is aggressively trying to dismiss the indictment. His right-hand accountant, corporate controller Jeffrey S. McConney, had the power to bolster the case against the Trump Organization but in fact made himself a loser.

Meanwhile, the second phase of the investigation appears to be failing. The grand jury that has assembled to convict Trump has probably yet to be asked, because Vance’s replacement, DA Alvin Bragg Jr., refused to sign it. His caution prompted the investigation’s two top prosecutors to quit in protest in February. A third top prosecutor has become less involved in the case. Prosecutors began returning evidence to witnesses. One person familiar with the situation described the team as “guts out” and “covers” of their own before.

For some, there is a glimmer of hope that New York’s only law that freezes the statute of limitations for old crimes could allow prosecutors to reinstate the effort in the future by waiting for Bragg change his mind or wait for someone to replace him if he doesn’t repeat the offence. -selected in 2025. But that will require sending in another large jury, bringing back some of the witnesses, and making the same presentation again.

Alissa Marque Heydari, a former assistant Manhattan district attorney who now runs the Institute for Innovation in Prosecution at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, warns that brings its own pitfalls.

“You don’t want to start from scratch,” she said.

Large cases tend to have a large number of witnesses and cause them all to interrupt work and parenting a burden, she explains. Plus, defense attorneys will eventually receive a copy of the jury’s testimony – both versions – and without any changes to their memory.

“Generally speaking, presenting a case is logistically difficult and also a long-term problem for the case. You are creating more opportunities to impeach a witness,” Heydari said. “Now you have a witness who testified twice. No one will testify the same way every time. The defense may say that this person is clearly lying because they cannot keep their story straight.”

https://www.thedailybeast.com/manhattan-das-star-witness-michael-cohen-indict-trump-now-or-im-out?source=articles&via=rss Michael Cohen, Manhattan DA Star Witness, Says Trump Now Or I’m Out


Hung is a Interreviewed U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Hung joined Interreviewed in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: hung@interreviewed.com.

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