27, February 2019
US President Donald Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen will tell Congress that Trump has committed crimes while in office, reports show.
Cohen will make such a disclosure in a public testimony to the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday, according to former Nixon White House Counsel John Dean, who quoted Cohen’s attorney, Lanny Davis, as saying.
Cohen will say that Trump asked him several times about a massive skyscraper project in Moscow long after he had secured the Republican presidential nomination, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters.
If the assertion that the president was indeed inquiring about the project as late as June 2016 is true, it would be symptomatic of his continued personal engagement in the venture well into his candidacy.
This comes as Special Counsel Robert Mueller appears to be nearing the end of his investigation into whether the Trump election campaignin 2016 colluded with Russia to damage his opponent, Hillary Clinton, and whether Trump has sought to illegally obstruct the investigation.
Cohen’s revelation on Wednesday comes as part of three consecutive days of in-depth discussion with congressional committees that started on Tuesday with a closed hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
The session, which lasted for almost 9 hours, mainly focused on what Cohen knows about Trump’s dealings with Russia, as well as about Cohen’s previous lies, according to two congressional sources.
Following the session, he told the media, “I’m going to let the American people decide exactly who is telling the truth.”
Over the course of the hearings, NBC News said Cohen will “provide evidence of alleged criminal conduct by Trump since he became president,” while the New York Times reported that Cohen “will use documents and his personal experiences to support his statements.”
Meanwhile, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders issued a statement, saying Cohen was “going to prison for lying to Congress and making other false statements.”
It was “laughable that anyone would take a convicted liar like Cohen at his word, and pathetic to see him given yet another opportunity to spread his lies,” Sanders added.
Trump has previously dismissed news of Cohen’s testimony in Congress as unimportant, claiming he had no worries about what Cohen would say about him.