Report: FBI probing Trump lawyer for bank fraud, campaign finance violations


by Chelsea Shilling, WND:

The FBI raided the office, home and hotel room of President Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, on Monday and seized records there, according to the New York Times.

And now federal authorities have possession of emails and other communications exchanged between Trump and his personal lawyer, which could expose the president to further scrutiny.

Cohen is being investigated for possible bank fraud, wire fraud and campaign finance violations, three sources told the Washington Post Monday evening.

The records taken by the federal bureau include those related to payments made to a pornographic actress known as Stormy Daniels, a woman who claims she had sex with Trump in 2006. In addition to records related to payments made to Daniels, the FBI also reportedly took copies of emails, tax records and business documents. The investigators also confiscated Cohen’s phone and computer.

The Times noted, “The seized records include communications between Mr. Trump and Mr. Cohen, which would likely require a special team of agents to review because conversations between lawyers and clients are protected from scrutiny in most instances.”

Special counsel Robert Mueller issued a referral, and federal prosecutors in New York City then obtained a search warrant, according to the Times.

Cohen’s lawyer, Stephan Ryan, said the raid is “completely inappropriate and unnecessary.”

The Times reported, “The search does not appear to be directly related to Mr. Mueller’s investigation, but likely resulted from information he had uncovered and gave to prosecutors in New York.”

Ryan told the paper: “Today the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York executed a series of search warrants and seized the privileged communications between my client, Michael Cohen, and his clients. I have been advised by federal prosecutors that the New York action is, in part, a referral by the Office of Special Counsel, Robert Mueller.”

“The decision by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New York to conduct their investigation using search warrants is completely inappropriate and unnecessary. It resulted in the Unnecessary seizure of protected attorney client communications between a lawyer and his clients. These government tactics are also wrong because Mr. Cohen has cooperated completely with all all government entities, including providing thousands of non-privileged documents to the Congress and sitting for depositions under oath.”

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