Trump sues Michael Cohen, a key witness in N.Y. prison case, searching for $500 million


Trump sues Michael Cohen, a key witness in N.Y. prison case, searching for $500 million

WASHINGTON — Donald Trump filed a lawsuit in federal court docket on Wednesday towards his former lawyer Michael Cohen — who has emerged as a key witness within the prison case towards the previous president — searching for greater than $500 million in damages for alleged “breaches of fiduciary obligation, unjust enrichment, conversion, and breaches of contract.”

Cohen was the important thing witness to testify final month earlier than a Manhattan grand jury, which then permitted a 34-count indictment against Trump. The previous president has denied any wrongdoing.

The grievance accuses Cohen of violating his attorney-client relationship with Trump by publicly disclosing details about the previous president and “spreading falsehoods about (Trump), prone to be embarrassing or detrimental, and partook in different misconduct in violation of New York Guidelines of Skilled Conduct.”

The previous president has “suffered huge reputational hurt as a direct results of Defendant’s breaches,” Trump’s lawyer Alejandro Brito wrote within the grievance filed in U.S. District Court docket for the Southern District of Florida.

Trump’s legal professional mentioned that Cohen did these issues with “malicious intent and to wholly self-serving ends.”

Cohen dedicated the breaches by “disparaging” Trump “by means of myriad public statements, together with the publication of two books, a podcast collection, and innumerable mainstream media appearances,” the grievance mentioned.

“Defendant has engaged in such wrongful conduct over a time frame and, regardless of being demanded in writing to stop and desist such unacceptable actions, has as an alternative in current months elevated the frequency and hostility of the illicit acts towards Plaintiff,” Trump’s lawyer wrote.

Cohen’s legal professional, Lanny J. Davis, responded to the lawsuit by saying Trump “seems as soon as once more to be utilizing and abusing the judicial system as a type of harassment and intimidation.”

“It seems he’s terrified by his looming authorized perils and is trying to ship a message to different potential witnesses who’re cooperating with prosecutors towards him,” Davis mentioned in an announcement. “Mr. Cohen is not going to be deterred and is assured that the go well with will fail primarily based on the info and the legislation.”

Trump needs “compensatory, incidental, and punitive damages” in an quantity that may be decided at a trial and would “considerably exceed” $500 million, the grievance mentioned. He additionally needs any income or compensation Cohen receives from his books, podcast or different merchandise.

The lawsuit tried to string a tough thread — arguing that Cohen violated the attorney-client relationship by revealing confidential info but additionally that Cohen has repeatedly lied. And whereas the submitting assaults Cohen as dishonest, it famous that he has additionally made many constructive statements about Trump equivalent to, “Defendant considered Plaintiff as a ‘fantastic man’ who could be ‘a tremendous president.'”

Trump has railed towards Cohen, the previous president’s earlier longtime legal professional, who pleaded responsible in 2018 to a bunch of fees tied to tax evasion, in addition to mendacity to Congress in its investigation into Russian interference within the 2016 election and his position in funneling funds to silence two girls who alleged that they’d affairs with Trump.

Cohen completed his resulting prison sentence in November 2021. Trump has denied the affairs and any wrongdoing related to the hush cash funds.

Final week, the previous president pleaded not responsible to 34 felony counts of falsifying enterprise data associated to his position in these hush cash funds towards the tip of his 2016 presidential marketing campaign.


Trump’s lawsuit provides his personal case in regards to the cost to grownup movie star Stormy Daniels forward of the 2016 — seeming to argue that Cohen did not disclose the funds to a unique Trump lawyer, Robert Costello, till February 2018.

Within the go well with, Trump cites information articles about Costello’s testimony earlier than the grand jury to say that Cohen instructed Costello that he had “negotiated a nondisclosure settlement for $130,000,” and expressly acknowledged that the $130,000 cost didn’t come from” Trump.

In Could 2018, Trump filed an amended financial disclosure that acknowledged the funds to reimburse Cohen and that these funds have been made in 2017.

The assertion of info filed by prosecutors within the Manhattan case detailed how Cohen oversaw hush cash funds to 3 individuals: Daniels, Playboy mannequin Karen McDougal and a former Trump Tower doorman who’d claimed to have a narrative a couple of little one Trump had out of wedlock.

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