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DONALD TRUMP AFFAIR WITH PORNSTAR | FBI UNSEALED IT.

By Siddharth Singh . 20th July 2019 04:41pm
DONALD TRUMP AFFAIR WITH PORNSTAR | FBI UNSEALED IT.

FBI documents which unsealed on Thursday suggest that Donald Trump was actively involved in engineering a hush-money payment shortly before the 2016 election. The payment was made to a porn actress who said she had a sexual encounter with him.

The documents which are released on the orders of U.S. District Judge William Pauley in Manhattan were used by law enforcement officials to obtain a 2018 search warrant that led to FBI raids on Michael Cohen’s home and office.

The documents provided the most extensive account to date of what appears to be then-candidate Trump’s personal involvement in the scheme to pay $130,000 to porn star Stormy Daniels to avert a controversy for a campaign already reeling from the release of 2005 audio from the TV programme “Access Hollywood” in which Trump bragged about grabbing women by the genitals.

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The documents detailed repeated communications between Trump and Cohen and Hope Hicks, Trump’s presidential campaign press secretary who later became a senior White House official.

Cohen, 52, pleaded guilty in August 2018 to violating campaign finance law by directing the payment to Daniels as well as another payment of $150,000 to Playboy model Karen McDougal shortly before the election.

Both women have said they had sexual encounters with Trump more than a decade ago and that the money was meant to buy their silence. Trump has denied the encounters and in 2018 told reporters he knew nothing about a payment to Daniels.

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The newly unredacted material includes a 19-page section of the FBI’s search warrant application with the heading: “The Illegal Campaign Contribution Scheme.” It shows Cohen having multiple interactions with Trump and Trump’s campaign staff as Cohen was negotiating the payoff with Daniels’ lawyer and executives of American Media Inc, publisher of the National Enquirer tabloid newspaper.

The National Enquirer’s publisher had offered to help Trump by buying rights to unflattering stories and never publishing them.

Before the payoff negotiations began, Cohen spoke on the phone with Trump approximately once a month and rarely had phone contact with Trump’s presidential campaign staff, the search warrant application said. The FBI documents do not provide the content of the calls.

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Beginning on Oct. 8, there was a sharp uptick in calls with Trump and his campaign staff. That evening - a month before the election and in the immediate aftermath of the “Access Hollywood” tape that caused a political firestorm and prompted a rare apology from Trump - Hicks, Cohen and Trump held a three-way phone call lasting more than four minutes, the FBI document said.

Cohen, who was once Trump’s self-described “fixer,” began serving a three-year prison sentence in May for his campaign finance violations and other crimes, including making false statements to a bank and tax evasion.

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In a statement released from prison on Thursday, Cohen reiterated his previous comments about Trump’s central role in the hush-money scheme, referring to the president’s company in saying, “I and members of The Trump Organization were directed by Mr. Trump to handle the Stormy Daniels matter; including making the hush money payment.”

Cohen admitted he lied to Congress about the extent of contacts between Trump and Russians during the campaign.