Published: Thu, July 26, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Trump says it's 'sad' Cohen recorded him

Trump says it's 'sad' Cohen recorded him

Trump is heard saying "pay with cash" but the audio is muddled and it's unclear whether he suggests paying with cash or not paying.

CNN obtained and aired audio on Tuesday of a secretly recorded conversation between Trump and his former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, discussing buying the rights to former Playboy model Karen McDougal's story about her alleged affair with Trump. Trump's lawyers say the payments were never made. She told Anderson Cooper that she believed National Enquirer's purchasing of the story was a favor for Mr. Trump in the last few months of the presidential election.

Cohen's legal team didn't notify the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District of NY that it would be taking the tape to the media, according to multiple familiar with the matter.

Mr Trump then says something inaudible followed by "pay with cash".

An audio recording released on CNN's Cuomo Prime Time on Tuesday night is a bombshell.

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As the first former federal prosecutor put it, "The way Cohen has behaved in general on Twitter and other things, they sort of know what they're getting with him, and if he had compelling evidence of crimes by Donald Trump, they could put a lot of their qualms aside about how he carries on". He says Trump actually says, "Don't pay with cash", showing Trump was not trying to hide the potential payment to a media company to keep model Karen McDougal's story from becoming public.

Petrillo did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Eleven of the recordings handed over to prosecutors in New York's Southern District are conversations Cohen had with members of the media, two sources familiar with the recordings told ABC News.

Cohen's attorney has said he released the tape after being subjected to an "intense campaign of disparagement" by the president's team.

Cohen, 51, is under investigation for possible campaign finance law violations regarding a $130,000 payment to adult-film star Stormy Daniels over an alleged affair with President Donald Trump 12 years ago. "It involves the discussion of how this corporation that was being set up to supposedly buy back any potentially damaging stories about Trump would pay for any such properties".

Davis told Axios that Cohen is sending a message with the tape's release: "I am no longer the previous Michael Cohen that you knew - taking a bullet for Donald Trump, saying anything to defend him, being a good soldier".

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