Giuliani: Trump did not know about Cohen's consulting income

Rudy Giuliani said Wednesday that President TrumpDonald TrumpHeadaches intensify for Democrats in Florida Stormy Daniels set to testify against former lawyer Avenatti in fraud trial Cheney challenger wins Wyoming Republican activists' straw poll MORE “was unaware” that AT&T, a Swiss drug company and a Russian oligarch’s firm paid Trump’s longtime attorney, Michael Cohen, for consulting work.

Giuliani, who represents Trump in the Russia probe, told Bloomberg the president was not involved with the payments “in any respect.”

“From our point of view we have no reason to be concerned about it or to pursue it any further,” he said.


The New York Times reported Tuesday that Swiss drug company Novartis, AT&T and a Russian oligarch with ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin paid Cohen through a shell company called Essential Consultants LLC.

That same shell company was used to make a $130,000 payment to adult-film star Stormy Daniels as part of a nondisclosure agreement related to her alleged 2006 affair with Trump.

Novartis and AT&T have since confirmed they paid Cohen to gain insight or access into the Trump administration.

CNN reported on Tuesday that special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerAn unquestioning press promotes Rep. Adam Schiff's book based on Russia fiction Senate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG MORE has questioned Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg about payments to Cohen in the months following the 2016 election.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders fielded several questions during Wednesday's daily press briefing about the Cohen payments.

She referred reporters to Trump's outside legal counsel, and wouldn't say whether Cohen was qualified to provide insights into the president's thinking.

"I’m not going to get into somebody else’s qualifications. That’s something an independent company that hires that individual would have to make that determination, not me," Sanders said.

Cohen is reportedly under investigation for bank fraud and campaign finance law violations.