Mueller: ex-Trump campaign chairman Manafort lied to investigators about funds, contacts

Giuliani to CNN: Mueller Thinks Manafort Lied About Trump Tower Meeting

Giuliani to CNN: Mueller Thinks Manafort Lied About Trump Tower Meeting

US President Donald Trump on Saturday again denied that his presidential campaign colluded with Russian operatives, but made no comment on claims that he directly organized hush payments to ward off a possible sex scandal during his White House run.

Trump took to Twitter, his primary means of communication, to address the multiple court filings that dropped on Friday in connection with special counsel Robert Mueller's sweeping investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

Mueller's office also submitted a sentencing memo today for Cohen's other guilty plea from the end of November, where he acknowledged lying to Congress when he said negotiations with Russian Federation to build a hotel in Moscow had ended before the primary season kicked off in the spring of 2016 (they had not).

What's more, Michael Cohen told federal investigators he had conversations with officials close to the president after Trump entered the White House, a new revelation that puts Mueller and his team inside the West Wing.

Mueller filed court documents with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of NY that state Cohen, despite initially saying he stopped working on the Moscow project in June 2016, "continued to work on the project and discuss it with Individual 1 well into the campaign".

In hours of meetings with prosecutors, Cohen detailed his intimate involvement in an array of episodes, including some that directly touch the president, that are at the center of investigations into campaign finance violations and potential collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin.

Mueller's office, in a separate filing, did not take a position on what sentence Cohen should receive when he appears before a judge next week in New York City. He said Trump had directed him before the 2016 election to arrange payments to buy the silence of porn actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, both of whom alleged they had affairs with Trump.

The president also praised another associate, Roger Stone, for saying he wouldn't testify against him, and Trump said a pardon for Manafort isn't off the table.

Prosecutors working for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of NY based in Manhattan asked a judge to impose a sentence that reflects a "modest downward variance" from the potential maximum of 63 months in prison that Cohen faces.

Cohen is scheduled to be sentenced next Wednesday by U.S. District Judge William Pauley in Manhattan on all of the charges to which he pleaded guilty. For that reason, prosecutors said, he should be sentenced to "substantial" prison time, possibly 31/2 years.

"In August 2014, Chairman-1 had met with Cohen and Individual-1, and had offered to help deal with negative stories about Individual-1's relationships with women by identifying such stories so that they could be purchased and "killed, ' " the prosecutors" memorandum says.

Manafort resigned from his job on the Trump campaign as questions swirled about his lobbying work for a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine. "But Cohen's description of those efforts is overstated in some respects and incomplete in others".

Cohen also told prosecutors that he and Trump discussed a potential meeting with Putin on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in 2015, shortly after Trump announced his candidacy for president, the filings say. Though Cohen had previously implicated Trump in the payments, the prosecutors now are linking Trump to the scheme and backing up Cohen's allegations.

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