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February 2023


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Tag: michael cohen

DOJ Inspector General to Review Trump Administration’s Handling of Manafort, Cohen

Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Trump.

By Steve Neavling

The Justice Department’s inspector general has notified lawmakers that he will examine how the Trump administration handled the prison terms of Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen. 

Inspector General Michael Horowitz told lawmakers about the review in a Jan. 19 letter obtained by Insider

Due to health issues, Cohen was released to home confinement in May 2020 but was sent back to prison in July 2020. In a lawsuit filed in December 2021, Cohen alleged he was sent back to prison in retaliation for criticizing Trump.  

By contrast, former Trump campaign official Paul Manafort was released to home confinement in May 2020 and not sent back to prison. He was serving a nearly four year sentence for tax and bank fraud. 

In a letter to the inspector general in May 2020, U.S. Reps. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., and Hakem Jeffries, D-N.Y., said Manafort received “disparate treatment” compared to other federal inmates who were not sent back to prison. 

“This outrageous, unconstitutional behavior by the Justice Department and BOP must stop,” the lawmakers wrote.

In the letter to lawmakers, Horowitz pledged to review the issue but failed to promise a full investigation. 

Cohen told Insider he was disappointed with Horowitz’s response. 

“This non-acknowledgment acknowledgment is far less than what I was hoping for after 18 months of neglect,” Cohen said. “This letter should have merely apologized for the delay, as it did, and stated emphatically that the OIG is opening an investigation into the unconstitutional remand of me back to Otisville.”

Cohen said a full investigation would show “that former President Trump and his complicit attorney general, Bill Barr, spearheaded this violation of my First Amendment right — proving my statement that Trump did not want to be president of the United States but rather an autocrat, dictator, monarch and/or supreme leader.”

AG Barr Must Resign for Politicizing DOJ, Ex-Assistant U.S. Attorney for Southern District of NY Argues

AG William Barr in Detroit, via DOJ.

By Steve Neavling

The criticism of Attorney General William Barr continues as an increasing number of legal experts say he has turned his back on his responsibilities to represent the best interests of the U.S.

Elliot B. Jacobson, who served as an assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York from 1985 to 2017, is the latest to call on Barr to resign.

“For his part, Barr has openly abandoned any pretense of acting in the nation’s best interest and has instead acted as Trump’s ‘Roy Cohn’ or his new Michael Cohen — take your pick,” Jacobson wrote in a column in The New York Law Journal. “The litany of his abuses of power on behalf of the president is worth rehearsing here.”

From the time Barr took office in February 2019, Barr defied his oath to support and defend the Constitution by refusing to recuse himself from the Justice Department’s probe of Russian interference in Trump’s 2016 election, Jacobson argued. In a whitewashed letter summarizing special counsel Robert Mueller’s findings during the investigation, Barr “had deliberately mischaracterized the Mueller report and its conclusions.”

“Not content with mischaracterizing the report’s findings and conclusions, ‘Barr has engaged in a real witch-hunt by, in May of 2019, appointing District of Connecticut United States Attorney John Durham to investigate the origins of the Russia investigation,” Jacobson wrote.

Barr continued to discredit Mueller’s report, Jacobson said.

Then last week, in what Jacobson calls a “Friday night massacre,” Barr fired Geoffrey Berman, the acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

“The only plausible reason for Berman’s sacking would appear to be his record as U.S. Attorney including: his prosecution of Michael Cohen, Trump’s prior attorney/fixer; his prosecution of two associates of the president’s private lawyer Rudy Giuliani, who were said by prosecutors to have been involved in the effort to recall the United States ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch; his investigation of Giuliani himself, in connection with allegations stemming from his lobbying practice; and his indictment, against Trump’s personal wishes, of Halkbank, a Turkish state-owned bank, on charges that it conspired to undermine the United States Iran sanctions regime,” Jacobson wrote.

It has become clear that Barr’s role is “supporting and defending the man who appointed him to the office he holds, Donald Trump,” Jacobson wrote.

“In doing so, he has engaged in gross abuses of power, and the damage he has done to the integrity of the Justice Department and to the rule of law is incalculable,” Jacobson wrote. “It’s time for him to go. If he will not resign or be fired by the president — either of which seems highly unlikely — then he should be impeached and removed by Congress, pursuant to its power under Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution, before he can do any more damage.”

Michel Cohen to Be Released Early from Prison Over Coronavirus Fears

Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Trump.

By Steve Neavling

Michael Cohen, President Trump’s former longtime attorney and self-described fixer, will be released from prison early over concerns that the coronavirus will continue to sweep through jails.

Cohen will serve the remainder of his three-year sentence in home confinement, his attorney Roger Bennett told reporters.

Cohen is expected to be released on May 1 after he completes a two-week quarantine at the prison.

Cohen was sentenced in December 2018 after pleading guilty to nine federal charges, including making secret payments to women who claimed to have had affairs with Trump. The charges also included lying to congress about his involvement with a proposed Trump Tower in Moscow and failing to report millions of dollars in income.

His initial release date was November 2021.

“Pursuant to the First Step Act, different forms of compassionate relief can be granted,” Adler told ABC News. “My client’s application was granted.”

Newly Unsealed Court Documents Reveal Suspicious Ties Between Cohen And Russian-Linked Firm

Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Trump.

By Steve Neavling

President Trump’s longtime personal lawyer and so-called fixer Michael Cohen exchanged hundreds of phone calls and text messages with a Russian-linked firm beginning on Election Day in 2016, according to newly unsealed court documents obtained by several news outlets.

The FBI also discovered that Cohen, who is now serving a three-year prison sentence, received $500,000 for consulting work from Columbus Nova, which is connected to the influential Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg. The company’s CEO Andrew Intrater introduced Cohen to Vekselberg. Vekselberg and Intrater are cousins and business associates.

After the FBI began investigating what appeared to be suspicious emails and bank transfers from Cohen’s accounts, special counsel Robert Mueller followed up with search warrants between July and November 2017 to determine whether the exchanges violated any laws, including wire fraud and money laundering.

The new records also reveal that Cohen received more than $280,000 from Trump since February 2017.

The revelations are important because they show how early Mueller and the FBI were aware of suspicious activity involving Cohen.

Cohen’s Attorney Once Inquired About Getting a Trump Pardon

Michael Cohen

By Allan Lengel

Was Michael Cohen looking for a safety net from the get-go?

Apparently so, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal which says Cohen’s attorney once approached President Trump’s lawyers about a pardon following the FBI raid on Cohen’s properties last year.

But the idea was dismissed by Trump’s lawyers, including Jay Sekulow, Rudy Giuliani and Joanna Hendon.

Cohen Blasts Trump and Trump Blasts Back

Michael Cohen

By Allan Lengel

The hearing had the feel of an underboss for the mob flipping on the boss, with some of the interrogators having little trust in what he said.

Nonetheless, freshly disbarred attorney Michael Cohen, a convicted liar and cheat,  took to Capitol Hill on Wednesday and did a major dump on his former boss, President Donald Trump,  calling him a con man and a racist, and suggesting he had broken the law.  He also indicated that he was assisting the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New York in a criminal probe into the president.

The Republican members couldn’t find enough ways to call him a liar who is incapable of telling the truth. The Democrats insisted the Republicans were afraid of him telling the truth.

Meanwhile, in Vietnam, President Trump attacked the testimony.

“It was pretty shameful, I think,” Trump said, according to USA Today. He went on to call it a fake hearing, but was pleased that Cohen did not suggest there was collusion with Russia.

He didn’t lie about one thing: He said no collusion with the Russian hoax,” Trump said.

“I was actually impressed he didn’t say I think there was collusion for this reason or that,” Trump said. “… I was a little impressed by that frankly.”

It’s the Big Day in Washington: Cohen to Testify that Trump Is a Racist and Conman

By Allan Lengel

Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Trump.

There should be more excitement Wednesday on Capitol Hill than at this last Super Bowl.

President Donald Trump’s ex-lawyer Michael Cohen takes to the world stage as he appears before Congress to tell his story about his boss.

USA Today writes:

Michael Cohen is set to deliver a blistering account of his dealings as President Donald Trump’s longtime attorney Wednesday, casting his former boss as a “a conman” and “racist’ while tying the White House more directly than ever to multiple investigations that have shadowed Trump’s presidency.

In a prepared statement to Congress, Cohen asserted that Trump knew in advance that WikiLeaks planned to release stolen emails damaging to political rival Hillary Clinton; that he personally reimbursed Cohen for an illegal hush-money payment to a porn star; and that the  president indirectly encouraged him to lie to Congress about his pursuit of a potentially lucrative Trump Tower development in Moscow, even as Trump repeatedly denied any business interests in Russia throughout the 2016 campaign.

Cohen also suggested that Trump knew in advance of a June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower, headed by Donald Trump Jr., in which a Russian lawyer promised to provide damaging information on Clinton.


Updated: Trump Directed Cohen to Obstruct Probe by Lying to Congress about Trump Tower in Russia

Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Trump.

Update: 1:11 p.m. Saturday — The Office of the Special Counsel disputed the BuzzFeed report, and issued the following statement:

“BuzzFeed’s description of specific statements to the special counsel’s office, and characterization of documents and testimony obtained by this office, regarding Michael Cohen’s congressional testimony are not accurate,” said Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller.

BuzzFeed responded by saying that it stands by its story and asked the Office of Special Counsel to clarify what in its report is inaccurate.


Report from Friday.

By Steve Neavling

President Trump told his long-time attorney and fixer Michael Cohen lie to Congress about plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow, according to a bombshell report by BuzzFeed.

If true, Trump and his attorneys would have a hard time arguing the president didn’t attempt to obstruct justice.

But it gets worse for Trump. Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team has learned that Trump directed Cohen to lie to Congress “through interviews with multiple witnesses from the Trump Organization and internal company emails, text messages, and a cache of other documents,” BuzzFeed reports, citing two federal law enforcement sources involved in the investigation of what happened during and after the 2016 presidential election.    

It’s likely the most damning public finding yet against the president, who continues to insist the Mueller investigation is a “witch hunt.”

While Trump repeatedly told the public he had no business projects in Russia, he supported a plan for Cohen to visit the country during the presidential campaign and even personally meet with President Putin to get the Trump Tower moving, according to the sources.

“Make it happen,” Trump allegedly told Cohen.

According to BuzzFeed sources, Cohen received help preparing his testimony from attorneys close to the administration. Whether the attorneys knew Cohen planned to lie wasn’t not immediately clear.

After his testimony, Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress.