Donald Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen had a unique window into the life of the president of these United States. Cohen naturally chaffed that he was the only one serving prison time for a crime Trump ordered him to commit. The attorney has been cooperating with all law enforcement and the House in this way.
Perhaps, Cohen has been trying to whittle down his three-year sentence. Perhaps, he has been motivated by revenge — or both. According to NBC News, he entered into an agreement with New York City prosecutors to turn state’s evidence about the Trump Organization.
Prosecutors have been investigating whether the Trump Organization falsified business records.
MSNBC’s Hardball host Chris Matthews invited former federal prosecutor Joyce Vance as his guest to delve into what this development meant:
‘If it is the tail end of this whole operation of going after Trump, it seems to me the Manhattan DA, that’s a political office, this case could be a big case if you’re taking the president of the United States down into a criminal matter. The question I have, I guess, as a nonlawyer, is what’s the penalty for this kind of case?’
Vance indicated that the consequences for POTUS could include a “lengthy violation for a felony:”
‘So that really depends on how it’s ultimately structured. If they were able to make some sort of a tax charge here, which we don’t know — we don’t know if they have tax records — we could be looking at a lengthy violation for a felony. It’s certainly not a misdemeanor.’
Then, the former federal prosecutor explained:
‘The felony crime is a serious one, it carries a lot of collateral consequences. But most significantly is the threat there is jail time involved, and any amount of jail time in the state system in New York would be very unpleasant for the president of the United States.’
Fortunately, members of the New York District Attorney’s office were not hampered by the Department of Justice (DOJ) as were many other investigations. They met with Cohen in late August at the Otisville Prison located in upstate New York. That was when Cohen entered into an agreement with them.
They agreed that Cohen would cooperate with the Manhattan district attorneys’ investigation. Although the former personal attorney would not make a very good witness, because he lied to a House committee, they were willing to work with him. His proffer agreement stipulated that defendants and suspects could give prosecutors information without incriminating themselves.
The president’s former attorney pled guilty to campaign finance violations when he arranged hush-money payments to the two women Trump allegedly had a physical relationship with. In addition, he pled guilty to lying to Congress about the financial deals between Russia and the Trump Organization. The president allegedly failed to report millions of dollars income.
Cohen expressed humility, which the court looks fondly upon in defendants. He said he took “full responsibility” for his own acts. However, he added that following Trump led him down a path to choosing “darkness over light.”
The Mueller Report Adventures: In Bite-Sizes on this Facebook page. These quick, two-minute reads interpret the report in normal English for busy people. Mueller Bite-Sizes uncovers what is essentially a compelling spy mystery. Interestingly enough, Mueller Bite-Sizes can be read in any order.