Donald Trump’s longtime personal lawyer is publicly under fire following a high-profile early morning raid on his offices, during which FBI agents seized business records, tax documents, and items pertaining to his personal business.
This came as a surprise to his boss — along with everyone else — who had all assumed that the raid was pertinent to the ongoing Russia investigation, especially since the referral for the Southern District of New York’s District Court case against Cohen was made by special counsel lead investigator Robert Mueller.
Now perhaps the worst news of all has come full circle for Mr. Cohen, who prosecutors are undoubtedly attempting to corner perhaps for a larger purpose: Investigators now have proof that Cohen lied about details of his travel itinerary during the Trump campaign in 2016 — confirming a large part of the infamous “Steele Dossier.”
The dossier compiled by Christopher Steele during 2016 alleged that Cohen had made a secret trip to Prague, Czech Republic to meet with high-level Russian operatives to strategize about possible cooperation between the Kremlin and Trump’s campaign apparatus to affect the outcome of the election.
Cohen notoriously denied ever having made such a trip, even tweeting a picture of his passport, accompanied by the hashtagged phrase “#fakenews”:
— Michael Cohen (@MichaelCohen212) January 11, 2017
As it turns out, Cohen was only brazen enough to tweet the picture of his passport because the trip wouldn’t have required it, being part of a 26-nation area that allows travel across borders without an international passport, and Cohen had entered the country through Germany.
After the Steele Dossier was published by Buzzfeed on January 11, 2017, Trump and his lawyer each issued separate denials of the allegations contained inside, with the yet-to-be-inaugurated Trump calling the media outlet a “failing pile of garbage” and Cohen tweeting the passport denial message.
It is still unclear whether Cohen met with the Kremlin operative that he was alleged to have seen in Prague, but according to a former Watergate prosecutor, Jill Wine-Banks, who weighed in on the development, it may not make any difference:
“It doesn’t matter who he met with. His denial was that I was never in Prague. Having proof that he was is, for most people, going to be more than enough to say I don’t believe anything else he says.”
All of this adds up to terrible news for Donald Trump, who is sure to launch a new effort to distract America from the developments with some new Twitter intrigue.
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