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Federal prosecutors in New York call for 'substantial term' in prison for Trump's ex-lawyer Michael

Mach

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https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/07/fed...g-memo-for-ex-trump-lawyer-michael-cohen.html

  • The Southern District of New York cited sentencing guidelines of 51 to 63 months in prison when referring to the sentence.
  • Prosecutors asked for a "substantial term of imprisonment."
  • But they noted that their recommendation be modestly lower than the suggested range of prison time suggested in federal guidelines.

Harsher than I expected.

Document here:
https://sc.cnbcfm.com/applications/...2/07/e3e0f7e0-dfbb-4b14-a1cf-654b9935f9d5.pdf
 
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Mach

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Trump appears to be implicated here:
With respect to both payments, Cohen acted with the intent to influence the 2016 presidential election.
Cohen coordinated his actions with one or more members of the campaign, including through meetings and phone calls, about the fact, nature,and timing of the payments. (PSR ¶ 51). In
particular, and as Cohen himself has now admitted, with respect to both payments, he acted in coordination with and at the direction of Individual-1.

As a result of Cohen’s actions, neither woman spoke to the press prior to the election.
 
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Cardinal

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"Harsh" is the word going around for sure.

Trump appears to be implicated here:

Yup, it's a matter of public record now: Trump is an unindicted co-conspirator.

But I've been wrong about these things before and I'll wait on the in-depth analysis by the Mariotti and the folks at Lawfare.
 

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Hmm.

I was told with good authority on DP that this all was a big ‘nothingburger’ a while ago.

Odd.

Maybe they’ll clarify their position after Sean Hannity tells them what it is.
 

Cardinal

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Yup, it's a matter of public record now: Trump is an unindicted co-conspirator.

But I've been wrong about these things before and I'll wait on the in-depth analysis by the Mariotti and the folks at Lawfare.

Yup, that take appears to be correct. The Lawyer Brigade is still coming out with their reactions, but so far they seem to be of the same mind: Federal Prosecutors have definitely concluded Trump has committed two Federal crimes, one for each payoff.

"Just to make it crystal clear, New York federal prosecutors concluded that the President of the United States committed a felony."
-Renato Mariotti

"WOW: The Dec 7 filing in SDNY on Michael Cohen’s sentencing charges that President Trump (aka “Individual 1”) directed a criminal conspiracy with his attorney Cohen to violate the federal election laws in order to increase his odds of winning the presidency by deceiving voters."
-Lawrence Tribe

"If I am reading the Govt filing correctly, it says Cohen committed campaign finance violations at the “direction” of President Trump. That means they are saying Trump committed a felony. And the memo goes on to explain how serious the felony is to the integrity of our system."
-Neal Katyal
 
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Cardinal

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Here's the sentencing memorandum for SDNY.

https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/5453422-Mueller-Cohen-Sentencing-Memo.html

"The defendant, without prompting by the SCO, also corrected other false and misleading
statements that he had made concerning his outreach to and contacts with Russian officials during
the course of the campaign. For example, in a radio interview in September 2015, the defendant
suggested that Individual 1 meet with the President of Russia in New York City during his visit
for the United Nations General Assembly. When asked previously about these events, the
defendant claimed his public comments had been spontaneous and had not been discussed within
the campaign or the Company. During his proffer sessions, the defendant admitted that this
account was false and that he had in fact conferred with Individual 1 about contacting the Russian
government before reaching out to gauge Russia’s interest in such a meeting.
The meeting
ultimately did not take place."
 

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page 14 also seems to indicate that:
the Company reimbursed him for legal expenses, falsely indicating they were part of the legal fees/retainer.
It's been so long I can't remember all the details. I do remember we all figured this was the case based on reporting.

So does the Company have legal exposure there in classifying this incorrectly? So hard to quickly find the right search terms since so much is out there.

He presented that $130K payoff to the company for reimbursement, and they complied, and reported it as retainer fees at the direction of the company...
 
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You can read the memo released from the Southern District of NY on Michael Cohen here;

https://hillreporter.com/breaking-michael-cohens-sentencing-memo-released-read-it-here-17035


ETA: sorry, I double posted this link so I'll go to another. This one is in regards to what I just read on the Bloomberg Business Channel.

Trump Campaign, NRA Illegally Coordinated Ads, Groups Allege

https://www.bloomberg.com/

Donald Trump’s presidential campaign may have illegally coordinated with the National Rifle Association in the final weeks of the 2016 presidential election, two watchdog groups said in a complaint filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission.

The NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action and its political action committee, the NRA Political Victory Fund, placed $25 million worth of television ads through the same ad-buying executives who also arranged spots for Trump’s campaign.

That ensured that “spending by both the NRA and the Trump campaign would be complementary and advance a unified, coordinated election strategy,” according to the complaint brought by the Campaign Legal Center, which favors greater regulation of money in politics, and the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, a gun safety group.

Federal election law bars campaigns and independent groups from coordinating their spending.
 
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Mach

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Federal election law bars campaigns and independent groups from coordinating their spending.

Link not working. Def need a thread on that, more NRA juice on top of the Butina spy novel...hah.
 

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Link not working. Def need a thread on that, more NRA juice on top of the Butina spy novel...hah.

This should work



https://www.bloomberg.com/

Nope I just tried it and it just takes you to their main page, but you should be able to find it. I'll copy a portion of the article......

Donald Trump’s presidential campaign may have illegally coordinated with the National Rifle Association in the final weeks of the 2016 presidential election, two watchdog groups said in a complaint filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission.

The NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action and its political action committee, the NRA Political Victory Fund, placed $25 million worth of television ads through the same ad-buying executives who also arranged spots for Trump’s campaign.

Federal election law bars campaigns and independent groups from coordinating their spending.

“There is reason to believe that the NRA-ILA and NRA-PVF made illegal, unreported and excessive in-kind contributions to Donald J. Trump for President Inc. in the form of coordinated communications,” according to the complaint. The groups are asking the Federal Election Commission to investigate the matter.

The complaint is the latest in a string of legal challenges to embroil the NRA this year. In April, the NRA said it received donations from about two dozen individuals with Russian addresses. U.S. authorities are investigating whether the gun-rights group funneled Russian money into the 2016 presidential election, McClatchy has reported.

The NRA didn’t respond to a request for comment. The Trump campaign didn’t immediately respond to an email requesting comment.

American Media & Advocacy Group bought ads for the Trump campaign, which directed $74.2 million to the firm for that purpose, according to FEC records. The NRA used Red Eagle Media Group, the trade name for a firm called National Media Research, Planning and Placement. The two firms share the same address, according to the complaint, and the same employees.

FEC rules allow campaigns and outside groups to use the same vendor, provided it has procedures in place that create Chinese walls between employees working for each.

“I don’t think we’ve ever seen as much evidence as this of coordination,” said Brandon Fischer, director of federal reform for the Campaign Legal Center. He noted that the four executives are described as senior officials involved in the development of strategies. “Here it’s the exact same employees buying on behalf of the Trump campaign and the NRA.”

If the FEC doesn’t act, it can be sued in federal court to force it to take action, something Fischer says that his group and the Giffords Law Center could undertake.

Overall, the NRA spent $31.2 million to influence the presidential election, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. The gun rights group ran ads on behalf of Trump in the summer of 2016 at a time when his campaign was silent. The NRA’s ads, which ran in battleground states, attacked Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton for her positions on gun safety as well as her role in the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi.

here's a link from Slate: https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/12/nra-trump-campaign-coordination-illegal-ad-buy-fec-fcc.html
 
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Mach

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"Harsh" is the word going around for sure.

Yup, it's a matter of public record now: Trump is an unindicted co-conspirator.
But I've been wrong about these things before and I'll wait on the in-depth analysis by the Mariotti and the folks at Lawfare.

I wonder if they have more than Cohen's testimony on this. Seems thin if that's all they have. My gut is that they would have not included it, if there was insufficient evidence to warrant it, and probably other things coming that won't make this look like a single, weak mention of a sitting president. I hope.
 

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I wonder if they have more than Cohen's testimony on this. Seems thin if that's all they have. My gut is that they would have not included it, if there was insufficient evidence to warrant it, and probably other things coming that won't make this look like a single, weak mention of a sitting president. I hope.

What's important here is that Federal prosecutors believe it. That's a really big line, actually.

Ken White and Renato Mariotti did a podcast together recently in which Mariotti made clear how cautious Federal prosecutors are. The primary reason why they have such a high conviction rate is that they have hundreds of cases to choose from and only take the ones they know they can win.

What's more, when the DOJ makes a conclusion like this, what they're saying is they believe the conclusion and they're prepared to prove it.

It's the December 4 episode, if you're curious and have the time.

https://ontopicpodcast.simplecast.fm/
 

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I wonder if they have more than Cohen's testimony on this. Seems thin if that's all they have. My gut is that they would have not included it, if there was insufficient evidence to warrant it, and probably other things coming that won't make this look like a single, weak mention of a sitting president. I hope.

They also have his files, cell phones, and computers.
 

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I wonder if they have more than Cohen's testimony on this. Seems thin if that's all they have. My gut is that they would have not included it, if there was insufficient evidence to warrant it, and probably other things coming that won't make this look like a single, weak mention of a sitting president. I hope.

Cohen also made payments to the Enquirer to squelch articles about Trump's payoffs to 'women' for sex.
 

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I wonder if they have more than Cohen's testimony on this. Seems thin if that's all they have. My gut is that they would have not included it, if there was insufficient evidence to warrant it, and probably other things coming that won't make this look like a single, weak mention of a sitting president. I hope.

"Those statements mean that in addition to Cohen's statement under oath, the evidence that prosecutors have in their possession is also consistent with the conclusion that Trump directed him to commit crimes. If prosecutors had contrary evidence, they would say so. In addition, it is hard for me to believe that they would have made this statement if the *only* evidence they had was Cohen's say-so. If all they had was Cohen's assertion, they would have merely said that Cohen asserted that Trump directed him to commit those crimes. That statement by prosecutors indicates that they have some level of corroborating evidence that convinces them by "a preponderance of the evidence" that Trump directed Cohen to commit those crimes."
-Mariotti

https://twitter.com/renato_mariotti/status/1071165980511010817
 

Mach

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What's important here is that Federal prosecutors believe it. That's a really big line, actually.
Ken White and Renato Mariotti...

Yeah, he seems to agree on his twitter feed:
In addition, it is hard for me to believe that they would have made this statement if the *only* evidence they had was Cohen's say-so. If all they had was Cohen's assertion, they would have merely said that Cohen asserted that Trump directed him to commit those crimes.
 

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I bet Cohen feels like an idiot right now.
 

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Yeah, he seems to agree on his twitter feed:

Mariotti and White ("Popehat") are the two most level-headed legal professionals I follow. The others are good, but tend to let themselves get carried away a bit.

Oh, and here's the reason I like Mariotti the most: he loves to pee on people's parades:

"That statement by prosecutors indicates that they have some level of corroborating evidence that convinces them by "a preponderance of the evidence" that Trump directed Cohen to commit those crimes. That means all of the evidence indicates it is "more likely than not" to be true. In other words, prosecutors believe the evidence proves it by a "51%" standard. Their citation to two paragraphs of the PSR (Presentence Investigation Report) indicates U.S. Probation agreed. That is well below the standard in a criminal trial, which is "beyond a reasonable doubt." By any measure that is well above 51%. We don't know whether they could meet the higher burden."

In other words, Prosecutors believe Trump committed those Federal crimes enough to put that conclusion in official court records, but might not (which is not the same as "is not") be ready to prove it in court.

In other words, onward we go...
 
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"Harsh" is the word going around for sure.



Yup, it's a matter of public record now: Trump is an unindicted co-conspirator.

But I've been wrong about these things before and I'll wait on the in-depth analysis by the Mariotti and the folks at Lawfare.

Now this is odd. Normally a prosecutor's delay's sentencing until after the guy who takes a plea deal testifies on behalf of the prosecution. Apparently they don't expect Cohen to testify against anyone - which suggests that the prosecution is blowing smoke.
 

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This pretty much means the Democrats will pursue an impeachment hearing against Trump.
 

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When underworld characters such as those involved in all of this have been doing these shady, illegal things most of their lives, they develop a very thick skin of arrogance because they pay off people, bribe them to get off the hook and get away with criminal activity. But, these same players bit off more than they could chew when they believed that they could do the same with the U.S. Government. This is our country we're talking about, not a stupid skyscraper in Manhattan or a 500 mil penthouse in Palm Beach. This is a horse of a different color and they truly believed that they could be the same bad actors in government as they were in private life. Big mistake on their part.
 

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