Corruption

Report: Michael Cohen Will Cooperate With Prosecutors

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

According to ABC News, Trump's longtime henchman and "fixer" Michael Cohen is prepared to cooperate with federal prosecutors in some manner.

Cohen has reportedly dumped his current legal team and is searching for another that will guide him through the process of cooperating.

To date, Cohen has been represented by Stephen Ryan and Todd Harrison of the Washington and New York firm, McDermott, Will & Emery LLP, but a source representing this matter has disclosed to ABC News that they are not expected to represent him going forward.

No replacement counsel has been identified as of this time.

Other outlets have also reported that Cohen is looking for a new legal team, but details of his possible cooperation federal prosecutors remain vague at best.

Federal agents seized literally millions of documents from Cohen's offices and home related to his dealings with his taxi business, Trump's mistresses, and the Trump Organization so there's no telling what they've found.

It should not be forgotten that Cohen was and still is a deputy finance chairman for the Republican National Committee.

  • katanahamon

    I always suspected there was a giant web of corruption, but…this big? I always thought that despite the corruption, the right side of the aisle actually believed in their patriotism, but, turns out it really is just a giant money grab. Even the office of the presidency is doing it now. The quadruple layer of hypocrisy by the Republicans in the outright corruption we are seeing is stunning. President Obama couldn’t wear a tan suit without an investigation..but we are putting up with all this???

  • muselet

    The only unresolved questions to the Michael Cohen saga are:

    1) Will prosecutors be impressed by Cohen’s tough-guy shtick? (I think not.)

    2) How big a fool is Cohen? (If he doesn’t flip on Donald Trump, he’s a big one. If he’s expecting Trump to pardon him, he’s a huge one.)

    3) If Cohen turns out to be a big (or huge) fool, how much popcorn should I lay in for the perp-walk?

    –alopecia

    • Christopher Foxx

      If he’s expecting Trump to pardon him, he’s a huge one.

      Wouldn’t count on that. The Tangerine Infant could decide to pardon Cohen after less than 2 minutes “thought”.

      • muselet

        I agree that Donald Trump could pardon Michael Cohen on a whim. I don’t think he will, partly because that would require loyalty to another person (Trump doesn’t have that in him), and partly because even Trump can figure out that someone who’s been pardoned could be compelled to testify against him.

        –alopecia

        • Christopher Foxx

          Trump wouldn’t be pardoning Cohen out of loyalty to Cohen. He’d do it, as he does all things, for his own narrow-minded selfish interests.

          even Trump can figure out that someone who’s been pardoned could be compelled to testify against him.

          What?? You’ve got that exactly backwards. Once pardoned, there’s no leverage the prosecution can use to compel testimony.

          Mueller: “We’d like you to cooperate with our investigation. To encourage you to do so we’ll drop some of the charges we could hit you with have nothing to offer you since you’ve been pardoned of anything we could charge you with.”

          • muselet

            More along the lines of:

            MUELLER: Ah, Mr Cohen. Good morning. This is a subpoena compelling you to testify as a witness in our investigation. Since you have been pardoned, you can’t claim Fifth Amendment protections, and since we already know a lot about what has happened in the past few years, we will have grounds to charge you with perjury and obstruction of justice if you don’t tell the absolute truth. Have a very nice day.

            Robert Mueller still has quite a few strings to his bow.

            –alopecia

          • Christopher Foxx

            I think you’re conflating pardons with grants of immunity. Pardons are forgiveness for past sins, immunity protects you from things the prosecution has yet to find out.

            Immunity gets granted when prosecutors want a witness to testify freely. “You won’t need to invoke the 5th Amendment because we’ve agreed that, in exchange for your testimony, we won’t charge you for any crimes you admit to in your testimony. So you don’t need to worry about incriminating yourself.”

            Pardons are for crimes already known about. “We can’t punish you for any of these things you’ve already done because you’ve been forgiven (pardoned) for them. But if we find out about any new crimes we didn’t know about before, like from any statements or testimony you make from here on out, then we can go after you for those crimes.” So, yeah, a pardoned person would still be able to take the 5th.

          • muselet

            I think you’re conflating pardons with grants of immunity.

            I make lots of mistakes, but that’s not one of them.

            I am not a lawyer, but lawyers have made this argument. If Michael Cohen is pardoned by Donald Trump, he can’t be tried for the same crimes again, full stop. However, he can be compelled to testify about those crimes and he can’t claim Fifth Amendment protection, which means he’d have a hard time protecting anyone else involved in those crimes (including Donald Trump—purely hypothetically, of course).

            Cohen could try to weasel out of testifying because of potential state charges, but a couple of phone calls between Robert Mueller’s office and Barbara Underwood’s office would probably lead to a grant of immunity by New York.

            Michael Cohen is toast, whether he realizes it or not.

            –alopecia

          • Christopher Foxx

            Oh, I agree he’s toast. I just don’t see how someone can be forbidden from exercise a constitutional right in a situation where using it would protect them.

            It makes sense to me that Cohen can’t use the 5th when testifying about the crimes he’s been pardoned for. He’d have no need to, since his testimony could not put himself in jeopardy for those crimes. But if asked a question and his answer would put him in jeopardy of incriminating himself in some other crime, opening himself up to some new charge? That’s what the 5th was designed to protect people from being forced to do.

          • muselet

            But if asked a question and his answer would put him in jeopardy of incriminating himself in some other crime, opening himself up to some new charge?

            Then his—presumably competent—lawyers chime in and say the question is beyond the scope of their client’s agreement to testify (or claim Fifth Amendment protection), and/or they work out an immunity deal with the prosecutor.

            –alopecia

          • Christopher Foxx

            (or claim Fifth Amendment protection)

            Yes. My point.

    • I don’t understand why people think Trumpov won’t pardon Manafort and Cohen. Their reasoning all assumes Trumpov is a rational person and he simply isn’t…at least not in the normal sense.

      • muselet

        The worst thing one can do is to assume Donald Trump is a rational being, but even a terrible lawyer like Rudy Giuliani has to be advising him not to pardon Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen.

        First, doing so would look like obstruction of justice (mostly because it actually would be obstruction of justice). Second, as I said in response to Christopher Foxx, someone who’s been pardoned no longer can claim Fifth Amendment protection and so becomes a valuable witness against Trump. And third, again as I said earlier, pardoning them would be an act of reciprocal loyalty that Trump is incapable of.

        All bets are off if Robert Mueller’s investigation, by some miracle, triggers impreachment or if Mueller indicts someone like Ivanka Trump.

        –alopecia

  • Badgerite

    “Says who?”

  • Aynwrong

    Cohen still works for the Republican National Committee despite the FBI all but taking permanent residence up his ass. Yeah, Republicans sure were worried about all the corruption in Clinton campaign weren’t they?

    *shoves finger down throat*