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Justice Department Announces Trump Attorney Michael Cohen 'Under Criminal Investigation'
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13 Apr 2018 05:30 PM EST

By Laura Tucker, Staff Writer; Image: Department of Justice Seal (Image Source: Public Domain)

 

Things just seem to be crumbling around attorney Michael Cohen as well as the Republican party this week, and of course what's central to them both is Donald Trump. It's been a whirlwind week, and it's ending with the Justice Department announcing that Cohen's "under criminal investigation," while details released of his settlement between a Playbody model and an RNC donor have led to the donor stepping down.

The embattled attorney filed a motion to restrain the evidence that was seized in the FBI raid on his office and other locations on Monday, but the US attorney in New York answered that a federal judge authorized the raids to search for evidence of conduct "for which Cohen is under criminal investigation."

It's unknown what crime Cohen is being investigated for as the filing was redacted, but it does contain the Justice Department's first details of the searches at Cohen's office, home, hotel room, safety deposit boxes, and electronic boxes.

He was not in court on Friday morning, but his attorneys filed a temporary restraining order on his behalf.

The federal agents were searching for communications related to efforts to suppress negative information before the 2016 presidential election, including those he had with Trump regarding the "Access Hollywood" tape. The attorney's taxi medallion business is a subject of the search as well.

Todd Harrison and Joanna Jendon, Cohen's and Trump's attorneys, respectively, requested an adjournment on Friday so they could review the Justice Department's filing.

For their part, the Justice Department is requesting a "taint team" to go over the information that was gathered in the raids, which is a standard practice. Cohen's attorneys would like the lawyers themselves to review the material or a "special master" to decide what is relevant, and Hendon has concerns regarding the taint team.

Cohen isn't the only one being taken down after the raids. The Republican National Committee deputy finance chair, Elliott Broidy, has been a big supporter of Trump's, and now he's resigned.

Along with negotiating deals with Karen McDougal and Stormy Daniels, Cohen also negotiated a $1.6 million deal late last year between the married Broidy and a former Playboy model he impregnated.

He acknowledged on Friday that he had a relationship with a Playboy Playmate who became pregnant.  "It is unfortunate that this personal matter between two consenting adults is the subject of national discussion just because of Michael Cohen's involvement," he said in a statement.

Keith Davidson, who represented Stormy Daniels at the time, also represented the woman the GOP investor had an affair with.

"Mr. Cohen reached out to me after being contacted by this woman's attorney, Keith Davidson," continued Broidy in his statement. "Although I had not previously hired Mr. Cohen, I retained Mr. Cohen after he informed me about his prior relationship with Mr. Davidson."

After apologizing to his wife and family, Broidy stated, "I acknowledge I had a consensual relationship with a Playboy Playmate. At the end of our relationship, this woman shared with me that she was pregnant. She alone decided that she did not want to continue with the pregnancy, and I offered to help her financially during this difficult period. We have not spoken since that time."

Just last month Broidy co-hosted a fundraiser for Trump's reelection campaign, and he was an advocate of his at the White House and on Capitol Hill regarding Middle East issues. He worked with George Nader who is currently cooperating with Robert Mueller's investigation.

Broidy has now formally stepped down from his position as RNC deputy finance chair.

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