‘Star Witness’: Michael Cohen to Testify Before Grand Jury Against Trump on Monday as Indictment Seems Likely
He was his fixer and his attorney, and now the man who did the dirty work for Donald Trump may be the last nail in the coffin that is Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s case involving the payoff of a porn star.
The New York Times reports Friday evening that Cohen is set to testify before the grand jury next week, and an indictment could come “possibly as soon as this month.” The Times’ Maggie Haberman on Twitter announces Cohen will appear on Monday.
Cohen went to jail for his service to Trump, facilitating the $130,000 payoff that can be seen as a hush money deal, falsification of business records, and violation of campaign finance law.
Now, as The Times reports, Cohen’s testimony potentially makes him “the last witness.”
“Once he has testified, nearly every crucial player in the hush money matter will have appeared before the grand jury — with the exception of the porn star herself, Stormy Daniels, who may not be called to testify,” The Times adds. “It would be highly unusual for a prosecutor in a high-profile white-collar case to go through a weekslong presentation of evidence — and question nearly every relevant witness — without intending to seek an indictment.”
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Professor of law, and former U.S. Attorney and Deputy Assistant Attorney General Harry Litman observes, “The announcement that Michael Cohen will testify before the grand jury next week is another strong sign that Bragg intends to indict as soon as he’s given Trump lawyers the chance to present argument it. You want Cohen, your star witness, & one with some warts, to go in last.”
Bragg reportedly invited Trump to testify before the grand jury, but Cohen predicts he won’t.
MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House,” discussed the case about an hour before The Times reported on the Cohen testimony report.
“It is not that unusual for a DA, just before they decide to bring charges, to give the target an opportunity to testify here… Michael Cohen is right, that there’s no way on God’s green earth that Donald Trump is gonna go in and testify” – @AWeissmann_ w/ @NicolleDWallace pic.twitter.com/ONl4uW0nv0
— Deadline White House (@DeadlineWH) March 10, 2023
Watch the video above or at this link.
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Death Toll Rises to Six as Three Children and Three Adults Declared Dead In Covenant School Mass Shooting (Streaming Video)
Six people have now died after a shooter shot and killed three young children and three adults at The Covenant Presbyterian School, a private Christian elementary school in Nashville, Tennessee. Police say the shooter was a 28-year old woman who had two assault rifles and a handgun.
WSMV announced the rise in deaths on-air, noting that the shooter is also dead. A police spokesperson later increased the announced death toll from five to six. Including the shooter the death toll is seven.
⚡️JUST NOW — NASHVILLE POLICE: “Shooter was FEMALE, in her teens… 2 assault rifles and a handgun… 7 dead total (3 kids) including shooter… shooter dead within 14 minutes of first call…” pic.twitter.com/KvKwlQZXOB
— The Tennessee Holler (@TheTNHoller) March 27, 2023
Live streaming video via CBS News below.
This article has been updated with additional video.
1:56 PM ET: Updated to change age of shooter based on new reporting from WSMV.
Trump Lawyer’s ‘Critical Evidence’ Will Help DOJ Make Decision to Charge ‘Without Significant Delay’: Former Prosecutor
Donald Trump‘s attorney Evan Corcoran, who allegedly directed another Trump attorney to draft the false statement claiming all classified and sensitive documents had been returned, has been ordered to testify before a grand jury and hand over documents and records to Special Counsel Jack Smith in the Mar-a-Lago classified documents criminal investigation.
Trump appealed U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell’s decision ordering Corcoran to testify and hand over documents, including handwritten notes. The Appeals Court in light speed mode, rejected Trump’s appeal.
Corcoran will be testifying before the grand jury on Friday, CNN reports.
RELATED: ‘National Security Implications’: Former DOJ Official Speculates on Ruling Ordering Trump Attorney to Hand Over Docs
One former top DOJ official, Brandon Van Grack, says the “Special Counsel is about to get access to the most critical evidence in the case. Should allow DOJ to make a charging decision without significant delay.”
He did not define what “without significant delay” means in terms of days, weeks, or months.
Van Grack served at Main Justice for eleven years, including as a lead prosecutor in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, and later, as the Chief of the DOJ’s Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) Unit.
“The announcement from a panel of three judges in the appeals court – less than a day after Trump sought to put Corcoran’s testimony on hold – adds momentum to the special counsel investigation as it seeks to secure evidence that could make or break a federal criminal case against Trump,” CNN explains. “The Justice Department has successfully argued in court that prosecutors have enough evidence that Trump’s interactions with the lawyer were part of a possible crime that they can pierce the confidentiality of the conversations between the two.”
‘National Security Implications’: Former DOJ Official Speculates on Ruling Ordering Trump Attorney to Hand Over Docs
A former top Dept. of Justice official says a federal judge’s expedited ruling ordering an attorney for Donald Trump to testify against his client before a grand jury and hand over documents very well may be related to “national security.”
U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell ruled that DOJ Special Counsel Jack Smith had successfully made the case Donald Trump may have committed a crime, via his attorneys, in his classified documents case. That finding allowed her to invoke the crime-fraud exception, and order Trump attorney Evan Corcoran to testify before the grand jury investigating the ex-president’s unlawful retention and refusal to return hundreds of classified documents.
Former FBI General Counsel Andrew Weissmann, who also worked for Special Counsel Robert Mueller and headed the DOJ’s Criminal Fraud Section, Wednesday afternoon on MSNBC said it’s possible Judge Howell’s expedited decisions were related to national security.
Tuesday night Judge Howell ordered DOJ to provide information by 6:00 AM Wednesday.
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Trump appealed Howell’s ruling, and Wednesday afternoon the Appeals Court denied his appeal related to the documents, Politico reports.
“I’ve never seen anything that quick. It’s very hard to know why. I have to say, to me, when I think about what can be a plausible reason– and this is pure speculation – is that there must be something in the papers that gave the judges concern about national security implications, because it’s such a short timeframe.”
“The reason this is a bombshell is you could end up with Evan Corcoran as a key, fundamental witness against Donald Trump in an obstruction of justice case and a false statements case,” Weissmann adds.
According to Politico, Wednesday’s appeals court ruling “effectively permits the Justice Department to circumvent Trump’s attorney-client privilege after a lower-court judge found that the documents likely contain evidence of a crime.”
NEW: Trump Lawyer’s ‘Critical Evidence’ Will Help DOJ Make Decision to Charge ‘Without Significant Delay’: Former Prosecutor
This article was updated to correctly spell Andrew Weissmann’s last name.
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