Mueller has a 'cache' of evidence showing that Trump directed Michael Cohen to lie to Congress: report

Mueller has a 'cache' of evidence showing that Trump directed Michael Cohen to lie to Congress: report
ABC News
Michael Cohen

Special Counsel Robert Mueller has evidence that President Donald Trump directed his attorney Michael Cohen to lie to Congress about a real estate deal with Russia during the 2016 campaign, according to a new report from BuzzFeed News.

Cohen has already pleaded guilty to lying to Congress — a federal crime — about negotiations for a Trump Tower Moscow in 2016. He had originally claimed the negotiations ended in January, when in fact they extended until June.

BuzzFeed News reports:

Now the two sources have told BuzzFeed News that Cohen also told the special counsel that after the election, the president personally instructed him to lie — by claiming that negotiations ended months earlier than they actually did — in order to obscure Trump’s involvement.

The special counsel’s office learned about Trump’s directive for Cohen to lie to Congress through interviews with multiple witnesses from the Trump Organization and internal company emails, text messages, and a cache of other documents. Cohen then acknowledged those instructions during his interviews with that office.

"If the President directed Cohen to lie to Congress, that is obstruction of justice," said Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) in response. "Period. Full stop."

Renato Mariotti, a former federal prosecutor, added: "Lying to Congress is also a standalone federal crime. If you direct someone else to commit a federal crime, you are also guilty of that crime."

Responding to the story, Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani tried to brush off the allegations.

“If you believe Cohen I can get you a great deal on the Brooklyn Bridge,” he said.

But the report notes that Mueller has evidence far beyond Cohen's sole testimony, completely undercutting Giuliani's argument.

Meanwhile, Cohen spokesperson Lanny David said: “Out of respect for Mr. Mueller’s and the Office of Special Counsel’s investigation, Mr. Cohen declined to respond to the questions asked by the reporters and so do I.”

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