Top lawyer at Novartis to step down amid Michael Cohen scandal

Michael Avenatti said Thursday that his client Stormy Daniels is likely not the only former lover President Trump paid to keep silent about their rendezvous

Top lawyer at Novartis to step down amid Michael Cohen scandal

President Trump's financial disclosure, released on Wednesday, included for the first time repayment of more than $100,000 to his personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, in 2017, raising questions about whether Trump's sworn filing from a year ago improperly omitted the debt.

This year's report shows Trump paid Mr Cohen more than $100,000 for expenses incurred in 2016, although it does not specify the goal of the reimbursement.

Donald Trump may have committed a felony with the lies and payments he made to Michael Cohen with regards to the Stormy Daniels payoff, or at least, that's what the federal Office of Government Ethics determined this week.

In March, Avenatti filed a lawsuit on Daniels' behalf seeking to invalidate her agreement not to talk about an allegedly "intimate relationship" on the grounds that Trump - who denies the affair, according to the White House - never signed it.

Giuliani subsequently told The New York Times the reimbursement was made in monthly installments of $35,000 to Cohen that began some time after the campaign.

"We have not verified the documents", Avenatti cautioned, but added that if the payments are bona fide, the timing of them could be "problematic" for Cohen and Trump.

Editor's note, May 17, 2:20 p.m.: In a statement, a spokesperson for Al-Rumaihi wrote, "In December 2016, Ahmed Al-Rumaihi and Michael Cohen met to discuss a potential Qatari investment in USA infrastructure by Qatar Investments, which is a division of the Qatar Investment Authority ("QIA")".

Avenatti claimed he's vetting the credible claims of two women who appear to be in the same boat as his client
Avenatti claimed he's vetting the credible claims of two women who appear to be in the same boat as his client

However, the contract could not immediately be terminated and Novartis had to wait until the full $1.2 million had been paid to Cohen's company.

That money is believed to be the reimbursement for the payment to Daniels.

The payment made by Cohen was between $100,001 and $250,000 and there was no interest incurred, said the report, following the ethics office practice of reporting dollar amounts of payments and holdings in broad ranges. Disturbingly, the official tells Farrow that he was motivated to act after discovering that he was unable to find two other "suspicious-activity reports" (SARs) filed by First Republic Bank that were once filed in the Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FINCEN) database - reports that the official claimed detailed "even larger flows of questionable money into Cohen's account".

The Mar-a-Lago resort owned by President Trump in Palm Beach, Fla.

It will soon be revealed that Stormy Daniels was not alone in alleging an affair with President Donald Trump and signing a non-disclosure agreement with Michael Cohen to cover it up, the adult film star's lawyer said Thursday. "He knowingly and willfully caused his campaign to not disclose this expenditure, and that's a criminal violation".

Personal gifts disclosed by Trump include golf-related items from two professional golfers: a golf bag and clubs worth $1,150 from Kevin Streelman and $750 clubs from Bryson Dechambeau.

Cohen, Trump's longtime attorney and personal fixer, had his Manhattan office, home and hotel room raided by FBI agents last month as part of a criminal investigation launched by federal prosecutors in NY.

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