Published: Ср, Марта 20, 2019
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Judge orders release of Michael Cohen's unsealed search warrants

Judge orders release of Michael Cohen's unsealed search warrants

The documents also revealed that Robert Mueller's team were granted permission to review years of Michael Cohen's emails and online data during his time working for Donald Trump.

Emails were sought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller's office, which is probing Russia's role in the 2016 USA presidential election, as well as by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, dating back as far as June 2015, according to the documents.

Cohen, who has been criticized for his unregistered foreign contacts and relationships, was never charged with failing to register as a foreign agent under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA). An affidavit supporting the requests said that they were made in connection with an investigation into campaign finance violations.

Judge orders release of Michael Cohen search warrants
Mueller accessed Cohen emails within weeks of taking over Russia inquiry

Cohen's first consulting client was Columbus Nova, an investment firm controlled by the Renova Group, based in Zurich, Switzerland, according to an Federal Bureau of Investigation search warrant application tied to last year's raids on Cohen's office, home and hotel room.

Tuesday's release of the search warrant came almost six weeks after U.S. District Judge William H. Pauley III partially granted a request by several media organizations, including The Associated Press, that the search warrant be made public due to the high public interest in the case.

November 7, 2017: The special counsel's office sought and obtained a search warrant from Howell authorizing the "use of pen registers and trap and trace devices" that allowed them to find out who Cohen was calling and receiving calls from.

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The documents reveal illegal payments from Trump's campaign to silence women who claimed to have had affairs with him.

The judge ordered prosecutors to redact Cohen's personal information and details in the warrant that refer to ongoing investigations and several third-parties who have cooperated with the inquiry. Cohen ultimately agreed to cooperate, directly implicating the President in the hush money violations and efforts to cover up plans to develop a Trump Tower Moscow during the 2016 presidential campaign.

The judge said prosecutors can disclose portions of materials related to Cohen's tax evasion and false statements to financial institutions charges, along with Cohen's conduct that did not result in criminal charges. Some of the money Cohen allegedly received came from "consulting contracts he'd signed after Trump won office", and involved payments "from companies with strong foreign ties, including a Korean aerospace company and Columbus Nova, an investment management firm affiliated with Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg".

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Cohen has since pleaded guilty to campaign finance violations, among other crimes.

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