Ahead of former President Donald Trump’s impending indictment on criminal charges, his former adviser and “fixer” Michael Cohen Said in an interview that the case is linked to money paid to an adult film star, he thinks the allegations or allegations are about holding the former president “accountable”.
“I never said it was about me. It’s not what a lot of people want it to be,” Cohen told CBS News’ Robert Costa in an interview that aired on “Face the Nation.” “‘Oh, it’s Michael Cohen’s revenge against Donald Trump.’ That’s not what this is about. It’s just about accountability. I shouldn’t be held accountable for Donald Trump’s dirty deeds.”
“Let him be held accountable,” Cohen said. “Those in his orbit who are truly accountable, like (former U.S. Attorney General) Bill Barr, right, who he weaponized the judiciary against his critics. Let them be held accountable because it preserves and it preserves democracy.”
Trump Indicted by a New York grand jury Last week, he became the first former president in US history to be criminally indicted. Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is investigating allegedly falsified business records linked to a payment — a $130,000 wire transfer to adult film star Stormy Daniels — that Cohen arranged in exchange for his silence about an allegation with Trump. Complaints or grievances are not disclosed, although a Sources familiar with the investigation told CBS News on Saturday that there will be a criminal charge.
Trump has denied any sexual contact with Daniels, as well as any wrongdoing in the case.
His attorney general, Bill Barr, criticized the indictment on Friday at an event sponsored by National Review magazine, calling it an “archaic abuse of the prosecutorial function to engage in politically offensive work.”
Cohen pleaded guilty in 2018 to eight federal charges of tax evasion, fraud and campaign finance violations related to payments to Daniels and another person, allegedly through the Trump Organization where he then served as a vice president. The former attorney testified that Trump ordered him to make the payments and later accused Trump in more detail in his 2020 memoir, “The Believer.”
Bragg’s office confirmed the allegations Thursday and said at the time that it had contacted Trump’s attorney to arrange the surrender. Bragg’s office said in a statement Thursday that more information about when the document might be unsealed will come “when a date for the case is selected.” One of Trump’s attorneys, Joseph Tacopina, told CBS News via text the next day that his legal team expected Trump to surrender to authorities “probably on Tuesday.”
Two of Trump’s attorneys, Tacopina and Susan Necheles, said in a statement that the former president “has committed no crimes” and will “vigorously fight this political case in court.”
Preet Bharara, the former US Attorney for the Southern District of New York who was fired by Trump and has since Criticized his administration, decided not to prosecute Daniels’ case at the federal level when it initially came across his desk. Neither did the previous Manhattan District Attorney, Cyrus Vance’s office. Bharara, who knows Bragg personally, said on “Face the Nation” Sunday that exactly why the current district attorney’s office chose to move forward with indicting Trump will remain unclear until the charges or allegations against him are fully disclosed.
“We don’t know. I know the man very well, Alvin Bragg… I don’t know what the allegations are. We are speculating about them. Maybe there is new evidence,” Bharara said.
Referring to the possibility that allegations involving alleged business records could also include campaign finance violations, which some have questioned as campaign finance personal expenses, Bharara said, “I believe, based on Alvin Bragg that I know. … that he has a proper legal basis for bringing it.”
Trump is expected to arrive in New York City on Monday night and appear in court in Manhattan the next day. The sentencing is scheduled for 2:15 p.m. Tuesday, attorneys said.
CBS News legal analyst Ricky Kleiman said that after Trump turns himself in, he will remain in the custody of the New York Police Department and the Secret Service, but will be “processed like any other defendant” after being charged with a crime, which means he will. Have shots taken of his face and will be fingerprinted.