Federal Bureau of Investigation raids Trump lawyer's office, seizes porn star documents

Michael Cohen

Michael Cohen. Jonathan Ernst Reuters

Monday's raid on Cohen's office, home and hotel room steps up the pressure on Trump, whose troubles have evolved from political obstacles he could swat away to potentially serious legal problems that could imperil his presidency.

President Donald Trump 's personal lawyer Michael Cohen said Tuesday that Federal Bureau of Investigation agents were respectful and professional when they raided his home and office on Monday.

"This is about getting Donald Trump at all costs even if it means stretching the boundaries of exceptions to attorney-client privilege", said former Trump campaign adviser Michael Caputo.

President Trump and his supporters are calling it a biased investigation being run by his opponents, trying to damage him politically.

The raid creates a new legal headache for Trump as he and his attorneys weigh whether to agree to an interview with Mueller's team, which in addition to investigating potential ties between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign is also examining whether the president's actions constitute obstruction of justice. A military strike would mark Trump's second retaliatory strike against Syrian President Bashar Assad's government at a time when Trump is seeking to reduce the US footprint in Syria.

MARTIN: Let me ask you, in seconds remaining, what does it mean that this raid originated from special counsel Robert Mueller, but it was an order actually executed by the USA attorney's office in NY and not the Mueller investigation?

Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, a friend of Trump, called the Cohen raids "a little heavy-handed".

Several former officials at the Federal Election Commission have said the payment could have violated campaign finance laws because it may amount to an unreported campaign donation.

Cohen'so attorney, Stephen Ryan, did not immediately respond to Fox News' request for comment.

In addition to the payoff to Daniels, federal investigators are looking into a $150,000 payment to Playboy model Karen McDougal, who allegedly also had an affair with Trump in 2006.

The Times has said Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, a Philadelphia native and Trump appointee, authorized the raids. In another-an all-caps blast-he blared, "A TOTAL WITCH HUNT!". Avenatti also enclosed an email showing Cohen had used his Trump Organization email address in correspondence with the bank that helped facilitate the payment.

On Monday, when he appeared with his national security team, Mr. Trump, whose motto could be, "The buck stops anywhere but here", angrily blamed everyone he could think of for the "unfairness" of an investigation that has already consumed the first year of his presidency, yet is only now starting to heat up.

Or there could be other non-Stormy-Daniels-related allegations about Cohen's conduct that have not yet surfaced publicly. She said that she thought they would publish her account but that they were really paying to squash her story.

The raid raises a host of questions and highlights the many ways that Cohen, long known as Trump's personal fixer, now could find himself in legal jeopardy.

"If the money came from [Cohen], the best case you could argue is yes, it came from him, but it was not connected to the campaign", says Simpson. Some see Trump's lawyer as overzealous bully. "Do I want to be involved in this? No". The Southern District of NY covers Manhattan, the Bronx, and some areas outside the city. "You'll have to ask Michael Cohen", about it, he told reporters. She echoed Trump's frustration, saying he believes federal authorities have "gone too far" by seizing communication between a lawyer and his clients.

A number of journalists have said Cohen threatened them with libel suits. On Tuesday afternoon, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, suggested that Trump had the power to get rid of Mueller without going through the Justice Department.

Manafort has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

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