Cohen sues Trump Organization
by Harvest Prude
Posted 3/08/19, 12:00 pm
Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer, sued the Trump Organization on Thursday for legal fees he claims he is owed. Cohen said the organization broke his contract by refusing to pay around $1.9 million in legal costs after he began cooperating with a federal investigation. Cohen is also seeking an additional $1.9 million for fees he incurred after pleading guilty to breaking campaign finance laws, tax evasion, and lying to Congress. He is expected to begin a three-year prison sentence in May.
The lawsuit said that in July 2017, the Trump Organization agreed to pay any of Cohen’s legal fees and costs arising from congressional investigations or special counsel Robert Mueller’s inquiry into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. At the time, investigators were scrutinizing Cohen’s role in negotiations to build a Trump Tower in Moscow and hush money payments to two women who claimed to have had extra-marital affairs with Trump. Cohen said the organization originally complied with the agreement, but the payments ceased after he started cooperating with the Mueller investigation.
Marc Mukasey, a lawyer for the Trump Organization, said in a statement that “the Trump Organization doesn’t owe Michael Cohen one penny of legal fees.”
A federal judge on Thursday dismissed another lawsuit involving Cohen. U.S. District Judge James Otero of Los Angeles ruled Stephanie Clifford’s suit against Trump was moot. The lawsuit tried to end a nondisclosure agreement related to a payment of $130,000 made by Cohen to Clifford, a pornographic film actress who goes by the stage name Stormy Daniels, to keep her from speaking about her alleged extra-marital affair with Trump prior to the 2016 election. Otero said because Trump agreed not to hold Daniels to the nondisclosure agreement, the suit no longer applied. Cohen previously admitted he paid Daniels the money in violation of campaign finance laws.
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Harvest is a reporter for WORLD based in Washington, D.C.