Trump calls for Mueller probe to end following Manafort, Cohen court filings

Trump calls for Mueller probe to end following Manafort, Cohen court filings

Trump calls for Mueller probe to end following Manafort, Cohen court filings

Court filings Friday from prosecutors in NY and special counsel Robert Mueller laid out why Michael Cohen, U.S. President Donald Trump's former personal lawyer, and Paul Manafort, Trump's former campaign manager, deserve prison time.

A key figure in the Watergate scandal has told CNN that the allegations against President Donald Trump contained in a court filing are sufficient for Congress to start impeachment proceedings.

Prosecutors working for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of NY based in Manhattan asked a judge to impose a sentence that reflects a "modest downward variance" from the potential maximum of 63 months in prison that Cohen faces.

Filings by prosecutors from both NY and the Trump-Russia special counsel's office laid out for the first time details of the cooperation of Cohen, a vital witness who once said he'd "take a bullet" for the president but who in recent months has become a prime antagonist and pledged to come clean with the government.

Prosecutors directly implicated Trump in efforts to buy the silence of two women who claimed they had had affairs with him, saying he directed his then-attorney Michael Cohen to offer them hush money.

Mueller said Cohen also shared information about his own contacts "with Russian interests during the campaign and discussions with others in the course of making those contacts".

Cohen pleaded guilty in August to violating campaign finance law when he arranged payments to an adult-film star during the 2016 election.

Cohen, who has been cooperating with U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe into possible collusion between Russian Federation and Trump's 2016 election campaign, pleaded guilty to the charges in August.

The White House similarly dismissed that filing, arguing it "says absolutely nothing about the President".

Prosecutors on Friday unveiled their recommendation as to what sentence former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen should get since he's been cooperating.

In an additional filing Friday evening, prosecutors said former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort lied to them about his contacts with a Russian associate and Trump administration officials. Last month Mueller voided Manafort's plea agreement because, they said, he was not telling the truth.

The meeting did not take place.

Cohen continued to provide "relevant and truthful information" to assist the probe, holding seven sessions with investigators, "many of them lengthy, and continues to make himself available to investigators", it said. "But Cohen's description of those efforts is overstated in some respects and incomplete in others". Mueller's office gave him some credit for his assistance, saying that while his crime was "serious", he had "taken significant steps to mitigate his criminal conduct".

Mueller said on Friday that Cohen repeated his false statements about the project in his first meeting with Mueller's office, admitting the truth only in a later meeting in September after he had pleaded guilty to the separate NY charges.

However, in the crimes to which he pleaded guilty in August, he was motivated "by personal greed and repeatedly used his power and influence for deceptive ends".

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