Law & the Courts

Michael Cohen’s Business Partner to Cooperate with Prosecutors

Michael Cohen, personal attorney for U.S. President Donald Trump, arrives to appear before Senate Intelligence Committee staff as the panel investigates alleged Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S. September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

A business partner of Michael Cohen has agreed to serve as a potential witness for prosectors looking into the Trump attorney’s past financial crimes, increasing the likelihood that Cohen will be pressured to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe.

Evgeny Freidman, a Russian immigrant who managed taxi medallions in New York City with Cohen, reached a deal with the New York attorney general’s office to assist prosecutors in state and federal investigations, the New York Times reported Tuesday.

President Trump’s legal team is reportedly concerned that Cohen’s indictment for assorted financial crimes will lead him to cooperate with Mueller’s investigation — a possibility made more salient by Friedman’s cooperation in prosecuting those crimes.

Friedman was disbarred this month after being charged with four counts of tax fraud and one count of grand larceny stemming from his failure to pay more than $5 million in taxes.

Rather than face a combined 100 years in jail — if found guilty and given the maximum sentence on all counts — Friedman pleaded guilty Tuesday to just one count; he received a $50,000 fine and no jail time in exchange for his cooperation.

In addition to a host of financial crimes related to his past business dealings, Cohen is under investigation by the U.S. attorney’s office for the southern district of New York for his role in paying porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000 to remain silent about her alleged affair with Trump.

On top of his legal troubles, Cohen has recently come under massive public scrutiny for an alleged influence peddling campaign he waged around the time of Trump’s election.

Michael Avenatti, the attorney representing Stormy Daniels, revealed — and multiple news outlets later confirmed — that Cohen received millions of dollars from various corporations after offering “insights” into the Trump administration. Many of his short-lived clients, including AT&T and the Pharma giant Novartis, have acknowledged that hiring Cohen was a mistake.

Most Popular


The End of Hong Kong as We Know It

The protests in Hong Kong have been going on for more than four months now, and no matter how the current crisis concludes in the coming days or weeks, it will mark the end of Hong Kong as we know it. The protests started in response to an extradition bill that was proposed by the city’s Beijing-backed ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Hillary Ruins the Plan

Editor’s note: Andrew C. McCarthy’s new book is Ball of Collusion: The Plot to Rig an Election and Destroy a Presidency. This is the first in a series of excerpts.  There really was a collusion plot. It really did target our election system. It absolutely sought to usurp our capacity for ... Read More

Another Pop-Culture Christian Loses His Faith

It’s happened again. For the second time in three weeks, a prominent (at least in Evangelical circles) Christian has renounced his faith. In July, it was Josh Harris, a pastor and author of the mega-best-selling purity-culture book I Kissed Dating Goodbye. This month, it’s Hillsong United songwriter and ... Read More

A Brief History of Election Meddling

Editor’s note: Andrew C. McCarthy’s new book is Ball of Collusion: The Plot to Rig an Election and Destroy a Presidency. This is the second in a series of excerpts. ‘The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back.” Thus spoke President Barack Obama just a couple of weeks before ... Read More

An Insider’s Guide to Italian Insults

The tragicomic irony of Chris Cuomo’s pugilistic outburst earlier this week — cursing and physically threatening a man for taunting him with a reference to the movie The Godfather — is that the CNN anchor reinforced the usual tropes about Italian Americans. We are all wise-guys, goons, and Mafiosi, just ... Read More