Seeking To Avoid Prison, Cohen Points To Cooperation With Feds, NY Attorney General

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 13: Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump's attorney, takes a phone call near the Loews Regency hotel on Park Ave on April 13, 2018 in New York City. Following FBI raids on his home, office and hotel room, the Department of Justice announced that they are placing him under criminal investigation. (Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 13: Michael Cohen, U.S. President Donald Trump's personal attorney, takes a call near the Loews Regency hotel on Park Ave on April 13, 2018 in New York City. Following FBI raids on his home, off... NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 13: Michael Cohen, U.S. President Donald Trump's personal attorney, takes a call near the Loews Regency hotel on Park Ave on April 13, 2018 in New York City. Following FBI raids on his home, office and hotel room, the Department of Justice announced that they are placing him under criminal investigation. (Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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December 2, 2018 10:49 am
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Lawyers for Michael Cohen on Friday night asked a judge to spare their client prison time after he pleaded guilty to lying to Congress, citing his cooperation with multiple investigations involving his former boss, the President.

Cohen on Thursday pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about an effort to establish a Trump hotel in Moscow during the 2016 presidential campaign. That adds to his previous guilty pleas to eight counts of financial crimes, including an unlawful campaign contribution to Donald Trump in the form of a hush money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels.

Cohen’s upcoming sentencing will cover all of the counts to which he’s pleaded guilty.

“Michael’s decision to cooperate and take full responsibility for his own conduct well reflects his personal resolve, notwithstanding past errors, to re-point his internal compass true north toward a productive, ethical and thoroughly law abiding life,” Cohen’s lawyers wrote in the memorandum, noting that he’d “participated in seven voluntary interviews with the Special Counsel’s Office” so far.

Cohen has also “voluntarily met twice” with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, the memo said, and separately “met voluntarily” with the New York Attorney General’s office “concerning a state court action in which the NYAG has sued the Donald J. Trump Foundation and certain individual defendants, including Donald J. Trump.”

Cohen additionally provided the NYAG’s office “documents concerning a separate open inquiry,” the memo said, without going into more detail.

Pointing to Trump’s attacks on Mueller’s probe, Cohen’s attorneys noted that he “could have fought the government and continued to hold the party line, positioning himself perhaps for a pardon or clemency,” but instead decided to cooperate with with investigators.

The memo details Cohen’s role in the agreements made with Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, his lies to Congress and the other counts to which he pleaded guilty.

Regarding his hush money payment to Daniels, for example, Cohen’s lawyers wrote:

“Michael made a payment to the lawyer for Woman-2 [Daniels] in coordination with and at the direction of Client-1 [Trump], and others within the Company. Michael was assured by Client-1 that he would be repaid for his advance of funds, and, later, again with the approval of Client-1, agreed to an arrangement conceived by an executive of the Company whereby Michael would receive reimbursement during 2017 in the form of monthly payments by the Company for invoiced legal fees.”

Read the full memorandum below:

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