Donald Trump lawyer Michael Cohen is under criminal investigation

Donald Trump's long-time lawyer Michael Cohen

Donald Trump's long-time lawyer Michael Cohen. Source Associated Press

Lawyers representing President Trump and his longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen will be back in court Monday in an attempt to stop federal prosecutors from accessing material that they claim is protected by attorney client privilege. He has arranged hush money through a non-disclosure agreement with a porn star who says she had sexual relations with Mr. Trump in 2006.

But Cohen's lawyer told The New York Times the Federal Bureau of Investigation searched Cohen's office, at least in part, because of a referral from special counsel Robert Mueller.

On Saturday, Cohen disputed the report.

The dossier by former British intelligence agent Steele alleged that Cohen met in Prague with Russians with ties to Vladimir Putin.

But that may be the least of Cohen's troubles as the Department of Justice says Cohen is "under criminal investigation" not only for his possible dealings with Daniels, but bank fraud, wire fraud and campaign finance issues as well.

Cohen has admitted to paying off Stormy Daniels in the run-up to the 2016 United States election, but denies it was because of an alleged affair between the adult actress and Trump.

The tape jolted the campaign and forced the Republican nominee to apologize in a publicly televised message from Trump Tower.

Michael Avenatti, a lawyer for Stormy Daniels, also made an appearance at the hearing.

Friday's motion said that because of that overlap, "Mr Cohen's Fifth Amendment rights may be adversely impacted if this case proceeds", a reference to the possibility that his testimony could be used by prosecutors to build a related criminal case against him.

Beyond Cohen's inconsistent statements about his travels to Prague, there are other reasons to be skeptical about his denial of the McClatchy report.

Trump and Cohen spoke over the phone on Friday, a source with knowledge of the matter confirmed to CNN.

"Bad reporting, bad information and bad story by same reporter", he tweeted, addressing the story's author by name.

The judge has summoned Cohen in the coming week.

After the election, Cohen delivered to Michael Flynn, Trump's first national security adviser, a so-called peace plan for Ukraine that was developed by pro-Russian Ukrainian lawmaker.

The U.S. launched a series of strikes in Syria, targeting chemical weapons facilities and a research center using both aircrafts and ships, President Trump announced Friday night. "I don't know what he did. even if he did something wrong I'd be there for him. he's my friend".

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