President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen said in an interview published Monday that he has never even spoken to adult film actress Stephanie Clifford, known professionally as Stormy Daniels, let alone threatened her.
“I have never spoken to her,” he told Vanity Fair on Friday, after Clifford’s lawyer claimed that she was threatened to stay silent about allegations that she had an affair with Trump years ago. “I have never e-mailed her. I have never met her. I have never texted her.”
“Every interaction with Ms. Clifford was always through her previous attorney,” Cohen added.
Asked if he knew whether anybody else connected to Trump had threatened Clifford, Cohen said, “I can only speak for myself,” and added, “I reiterate: I have never threatened her in any way and I am unaware of anyone else doing so.”
Clifford’s lawyer Michael Avenatti issued a cryptic response.
Mr. Cohen should ensure he makes REFUNDABLE reservations for that extended vacation he is planning on my client’s dime…..https://t.co/n9llqgZC1P
— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) March 19, 2018
Avenatti on Friday told TPM’s “Josh Marshall Podcast” of Clifford: “I think she’s very concerned about her physical safety right now, and I think she has very — or a lot of reasons to be concerned. I likewise am slightly concerned about my physical safety.”
Avenatti said that he and Clifford have received “a series of death threats” and both fear for their physical safety. He told MSNBC and CNN the same day that Clifford was “physically threatened” — though he did not specify by whom — to stay quiet about her alleged affair with Trump.
Clifford has sued Trump and argued that, because he didn’t sign a non-disclosure agreement covering the alleged affair, she has the right to tell her story. Trump, in response, had his own attorneys join a lawsuit to prevent Clifford from speaking, and filed to move the lawsuit to federal court.
In every one of his interviews, Avenatti has promoted a CBS’ “60 Minutes” interview with Clifford scheduled to air Sunday.
Cohen has acknowledged paying Clifford $130,000 in October 2016 to stay quiet about the alleged affair, which he claims never happened, but on Friday denied reports that he has sought to prevent the CBS interview from airing through legal action. If the interview were to air, he told Vanity Fair, “It’s just another breach by Ms. Clifford and will only further increase the damages I will be seeking pursuant to the agreement.”