Cohen tells associates legal fees ‘bankrupting’ him, wants Trump to pay fees: report
President Trump’s former longtime attorney Michael Cohen has told friends that the ongoing legal investigation into his financial dealings and possible campaign finance violations is taking a toll on him, and that he wants Trump to take over the tab.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Cohen has “frequently” complained that the mounting costs of his legal fees are “bankrupting” him, according to one source, and that he is frustrated that the president, whom Cohen feels owes him for years service, hasn’t offered to cover the fees.
Trump told reporters last week that he hasn’t spoken to his former attorney in months, adding that Cohen no longer does any business with him.
“I always liked Michael Cohen,” he said Friday. “I haven’t spoken to Michael in a long time.”
“No, he’s not my lawyer anymore, but I always liked Michael. And he’s a good person,” Trump added.
Cohen is under investigation for potentially breaking campaign finance laws related to his $130,000 nondisclosure payment to adult-film actress Stormy Daniels, which was made just weeks before the 2016 presidential election. He is also under investigation for bank fraud, according to The Washington Post.
Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, says the payment was to guarantee her silence related to an affair she says she had with Trump in 2006. She is suing Cohen to void the agreement, as well as both Cohen and Trump for defamation over denying her claims.
FBI agents raided Cohen’s home, office and safety deposit boxes earlier this year after a referral from special counsel Robert Mueller’s office, which is investigating possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia’s efforts to influence the 2016 election.
The raids were blasted at the time by Trump and his allies, who called the move a violation of attorney–client privilege. Cohen has not yet been charged with a crime, but ABC News reports he may soon lose his representation and begin cooperating with investigators.