President Donald Trump’s longtime personal attorney and friend Michael Cohen “vehemently” denied to Congress allegations regarding himself in a dossier alleging ties between Trump and Russia, the New York Times reported Wednesday evening.
The New York Times reported that in an eight-page letter to the House Intelligence Committee, Cohen’s lawyer Stephen M. Ryan claimed allegations in the dossier regarding Cohen “are false and remain wholly unsubstantiated.”
“Mr. Cohen vehemently denies the claims made in the dossier about him,” Ryan wrote, according to the report. “We have not uncovered a single document that would in any way corroborate the dossier’s allegations regarding Mr. Cohen, nor do we believe that any such document exists.”
According to the New York Times, Cohen denied that he had ever traveled to Prague, and said he was “not aware of any impropriety related to Mr. Trump’s ‘relationship’ with Russia, nor is he aware of Mr. Trump having an improper political relationship with officials of the Russian Federation.”
The Kremlin on Wednesday confirmed that Cohen reached out during the 2016 election for help with a stalled Trump-branded business project in Russia.
Cohen blamed Felix Sater, his friend and another longtime Trump associate, for pushing him to reach out. Sater in 2015 predicted that Russian President Vladimir Putin would help Trump win the election and bragged of his connections to the Russian leader.
The dossier Cohen addressed, which BuzzFeed published in January, remains largely unsubstantiated, but CNN reported in February that unnamed U.S. intelligence sources had corroborated some communications the document detailed.
CNN also reported in April that the FBI used the dossier as part of its justification to obtain approval from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to monitor the communications of Carter Page, a former adviser to Trump’s campaign.