Donald Trump's lawyer shouts Michael Cohen's testimony ‘was a lie!’ - Hindustan Times
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Donald Trump's lawyer shouts Michael Cohen's testimony ‘was a lie!’

May 17, 2024 02:31 PM IST

Donald Trump’s lawyer and Michael Cohen clash over hush-money payment in court.

On Thursday, Counsel for Donald Trump strenuously objected to the prosecution and accused the lynchpin witness, Michael Cohen, of being untruthful repeatedly.

‘I want this man [Donald Trump] to go down’, Cohen’s words haunt him in cross-examinationen.(AP)
‘I want this man [Donald Trump] to go down’, Cohen’s words haunt him in cross-examinationen.(AP)

Trump’s former attorney and “fixer”, Cohen, found himself under intense scrutiny as he recounted a direct conversation with the former president about the payment to pornstar Stormy Daniels.

Blanche was quick to counter, raising his voice and slamming Cohen’s account as “a lie.”

He pointed to records indicating that Cohen had actually been in contact with Trump’s bodyguard regarding a prank call, not the payment.

Cohen countered, explaining that the call also addressed the issue of a “14-year-old” prank caller. He knew Schiller was with Trump at the time and insisted that the call encompassed more than just the harassment.

Cohen said that he always consulted “everything by the boss” immediately on such matters, including during that call.

Blanche responded loudly to Cohen’s assertion: “That. Was. A. Lie.”

ALSO READ| CNN's Kaitlan Collins catches Donald Trump's lawyer off-guard on live TV over ‘grossed up’ payments: Watch

Defence wasn't ready to brace against Trump lawyer's fireballs

The defence’s strategy to cast grounds of doubt appears to fall on deaf ears as it was part of the witnesses' third-day testimony before the jury throughout the event.

Blanche came and sat with her back straight, using threatening gestures, sitting next to Trump. It was as if a collective sense of relief was heard from those who were present in the courtroom at the time. The judge announced that court recess would be in the afternoon.

The charges against Trump are serious, with 34 felony counts of falsifying business records. The allegations suggest that payments to Cohen were disguised as legal expenses when they were, in fact, reimbursements for the payoff to Daniels, who has claimed an alleged affair with Trump.

The prosecution argues that Trump aimed to suppress this information to safeguard his 2016 presidential campaign. Trump has consistently denied the allegations, pleading not guilty to all charges and refuting any sexual involvement with Daniels.

Cohen’s past criminal convictions, including lying to Congress and publicly denouncing Trump, have tainted his reliability as a witness. Despite his guilty plea to federal campaign finance violations related to the hush-money payment in 2018, Cohen insists that he acted under Trump’s direction.

ALSO READ| Barron is 'little Melania', mother is shielding him in 'tight bubble' amidst media scrutiny around Trump's trial

The defence has capitalized on Cohen’s credibility issues, portraying him as a disgruntled liar with a grudge against Trump.

On Thursday morning, Blanche played excerpts from Cohen’s podcast, “Mea Culpa,” where Cohen expressed his eagerness to see Mr. Trump face justice, stating, “I want this man to go down.”

Blanche also highlighted a social media post where Cohen derogatorily referred to Trump as “Dumbass Donald.”

When Blanche asked him, “Does the outcome of this trial affect you personally?”

Cohen simply responded, “Yes.”

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