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tv   BBC News at Six  BBC News  February 27, 2019 6:00pm-6:31pm GMT

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is what you're supposed to do works is what you're supposed to do is provide them with information that leads to ongoing investigations. i'm currently working with them right now on several other issues of investigation that concerns them, that they are looking at. if those investigations become fruitful, then there is a possibility for a rule 35 motion. i don't know what the benefit in terms of time would be but this congressional hearing today is not going to be the basis of a rule 35 motion. i wish it was but it's not. mr cohen, mrcohen, i'm mr cohen, i'm going to come back to the question i asked before with regards to your false statement you submitted to congress. on hearing was very clear that it asked for contracts with foreign entities over the last two years. have you had any
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contracts with foreign entities whether a korean airline or the kaza khsta n whether a korean airline or the kazakhstan bank? your testimony earlier said you had contracts with them. i believe it talked about lobbying. i did know lobbying will stop i am not asking about lobbying. they are not government agencies. do you have foreign contracts? i currently have no foreign contracts. do you have foreign contracts over the last two years? yes. why didn't you put them on the form? it says it isa criminal you put them on the form? it says it is a criminal offence to not list them on the form? the companies you are referring to are not government companies. it says non-governmental. you signed it will stop it says
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foreign agency. it says foreign contracts. he won us to read it to you. i read itand it contracts. he won us to read it to you. i read it and it was reviewed by my counsel. it was not lobbying. it has nothing to do with lobbying. i'm going to take a look at it before i leave and hopefully i will amend it prior to leaving because thatis amend it prior to leaving because that is not the way i read your document. another example of your skirting the truth. i want to ask another question. it is my time and not yours. were you advised to one shall counsel advised to withhold whom written testimony to the latest possible date asjohn dean said last night on cnn? was it my what? where you advised to one shall counsel advised withhold your written testimony to this committee at the
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latest possible date to get it to this committee, at the latest possible date, as john this committee, at the latest possible date, asjohn dean said he advised you? no. i have never spoken withjohn advised you? no. i have never spoken with john dean. advised you? no. i have never spoken with john dean. has he spoken to your attorney? ask your attorney. we we re your attorney? ask your attorney. we were there till 11, i2 your attorney? ask your attorney. we were there till 11, 12 o'clock. you know you have been coming for some time. we were working till 11, 12 o'clock last night to finish everything. you are writing it last night, mr cohen. we were making edits all the way through the night. mrcohen, in november edits all the way through the night. mr cohen, in november2013, president donald trump testified under oath president donald trump testified underoath ina president donald trump testified under oath in a lawsuit related to the failed real estate project trump tower in fort lauderdale. he was
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asked about his knowledge of a russian born real estate developer and convicted member of the russian mafia who, according to press reports, pleaded guilty for his role ina reports, pleaded guilty for his role in a stock manipulation scheme. it is worth noting and it is well— publicised the direct relationship between the russian mafia and the kremlin over the years president trump was asked how many times he interacted with the convicted mobster. in 2013 he testified that, not many. if he were sitting in the room he would not know what he looked like. as you previously testified clay isn't it true that president trump new the convicted russian mobster when he made the statement? yes. isn't it true that because of his relationship to the trump organisation that he had an office in trump tower? and on the 26th
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floor. why is the 26th floor important? it is the floor of mr trump. so, his office was on the same floor as president trump. when he left his office became my office. they had convicted —— the convicted russian mobster had business cards saying he was an adviser to donald trump, as reported in the washington post? yes. did he pay rent for his office? no, he did not. based on those facts, isn't it true that president trump misled at best or worst lied under oath? yes. in december 2016, president trump was asked again about his relationship to the convicted russian mobster by
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a reporter for the associated press. he stated, i have to even think about it". he added, quote, i'm not that familiar with him, unquote. where would we find business records that explains the relationship of the president with the convicted russian mobster? would that be in the files of the trump organisation? they would be in the files and there would be copies to his company, i suspect on his e—mail address, possibly hard files in possession of him. and when you say in possession of the trump organisation where? him. and when you say in possession of the trump organisation where7m depends upon who the attorney was that was working on it. now it would
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probably be in a box of sight. they have a search facility where there are old files. in addition to the convicted russian mobster, do you know of any other ties to other convicted mobster 's?|j know of any other ties to other convicted mobster 's? i am not aware. how many of these condos are there? i'm not aware of any. the statement you are referring to is not one i agree with. ayew aware of any cash purchases by russian oligarchs and family measures of trump properties? —— you aware?|j have trump properties? —— you aware?” have never seen that happen and i have never seen that happen and i have never seen that happen and i have never heard of it. i can tell
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you we sold the property of mr trump in palm beach, it came in by wire. that came from a russian's bank account. you also talked about president trump doing negotiations throughout the campaign regarding the trump tower in moscow. was he directly involved in the negotiations and, if so, how do you know? the answer is, yes, it relates to negotiations. it was merely follow—u ps to negotiations. it was merely follow—ups as to what is currently happening with russia. meaning he wa nted happening with russia. meaning he wanted me to give him a status report. the project never advanced because they were unable, he mr saito was unable to provide me with proof that somebody owned the piece of property we could build on. mr
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cohen, why did mr trump choose to hire you and why did he trust you with the various tasks you performed for him? i don't know. you would have to ask him. you have admitted to bad character over the years you have no idea why he chose to hire you? in 2006 i was asked by don junior to cover me with his father. he followed up by asking if i could ta ke he followed up by asking if i could take a look at an issue that was occurring at trump tower. i went ahead and looked into it and found the statements the border making about mrtrump the statements the border making about mr trump were inaccurate and the reason donald came to me as i had an apartment there for investment by my parents had an apartment there, my in—laws lived there, friends of mine. we bought a big block from a brokerage company. we got a good price on each unit. we ultimately turned over the board and i became actually the treasure of
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the board because the out—of—control spending was going to put the building into bankruptcy. i was proud to say that within a year we had plus $1 million versus —i.3. at the end of the day mr trump appreciated that anti—task me with something else, to handle the problem is that donjunior had created in terms of a business license deal and we resolved that. then, on top of that, the third time mrtrump had then, on top of that, the third time mr trump had asked me to take a look at the third trump entertainment resort from chapter ii reorganisation, because he had a series of questions that he wanted answered. i read two stacks of books and gave him the answer is that he needed. with that, the next time sitting in his office committee asked me if i was happy at the
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sleepy old firm i was with? i said yes. he said, would you rather work me? would you offer me a job? yes. we negotiated i never went back to my office. you suggested the president sometimes communicates his indirectly. you said, for example, mrtrump did not indirectly. you said, for example, mr trump did not directly tammy to lied to congress, that is not how he operates. can you explain how he does this? —— told me to live. operates. can you explain how he does this? -- told me to live. that is the nicest looking tie i have ever seen, isn't it? would you fight with him? no, it is the life of looking tie he has seen. you're watching continuing coverage of the former personal lawyer of donald trump, michael cohen. we have heard extraordinary and blistering testimony to congress will stop he
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was accused of criminal conduct while in office. in an explosive statement he alleged donald trump was a racist, a conman and a cheat. he knew in advance it is claimed about e—mail to damage hillary clinton. there was evidence of the president paying hush money to a film star. a lot of people asked about the release of the hacked documents, the democrat committee e—mail ahead of time, and the answer is yes. as i earlier stated, mr trump knew from roger stone in advance about the wikileaks drop of e—mails. in july of advance about the wikileaks drop of e—mails. injuly of 2016, days before the democratic convention, i was in the office of mr trump when his secretary announced that roger stone was on the phone. mr trump or
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mr stone on the speakerphone. he was told that he had just got off the phone with julian told that he had just got off the phone withjulian assange and that he told mr stone that within a couple of days there would be a massive dump of e—mails to damage hillary clinton's campaign. mr trump responded by stating to the effect, wouldn't that be great?! mr trump is racist. the country has seen mr trump caught white supremacists and bigots. you have heard him call poorer countries names. he once asked me if i could name a country run bya asked me if i could name a country run by a black person that was not a sheet hole. this was when barack
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obama was president of the united states. he commented that only black people could live in such a way. he told me that black people would never vote for him because they were too stupid and yet i continued to work for him. mr trump is a conman. he asked me to pay off an adult film star with whom he had an affair and to lie about it to his wife, which i did. lying to the first lady is one of my biggest regrets because she is a kind of a good person, and i respect her greatly and she did not deserve that. i am giving the committee today a copy of the $130,000 wire transfer from the two miss clifford's turney cheering the closing days of the presidential campaign was demanded by miss clifford to maintain her silence
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about her affair with mr trump and this is exhibit four to my testimony. mr trump directed me to use my own personalfunds testimony. mr trump directed me to use my own personal funds from a home equity line of credit to avoid any money being traced back to him that could negatively impact his campaign and! that could negatively impact his campaign and i did that without all the ring to consider whether that was improper, much less whether it was improper, much less whether it was the right thing to do what howard in packed me, my family, or the public? —— or how it would impact me? i am going to jail in pa rt impact me? i am going to jail in part for my decision to help mr trump had that payment to the american people before they voted a few days later, as exhibit 580 my testimony shows. i am providing a copy of a $35,000 check that
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president trump personally signed from his personal bank account on august the 1st of 2017, when he was president of the united states, pursuant to the cover—up which was the basis of my guilty plea, to reimburse me, the word used by mr trump's tv lawyer for the illegal hush money i paid on his behalf, this $35,000 cheque was one of the 11 check instalments that was paid throughout the year while he was president. other checks to reimburse me for the hush manny payments were signed by donald trumpjunior and another. —— hush money. the president of the united states that is wrote a personal check for the payment of hush money as part of the criminal scheme to violate campaign finance laws. part of the opening
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statement of michael cohen. extraordinary testimony we heard for almost two or three hours. at different stages you had to remind yourself he was talking about the president of the united states. yourself he was talking about the president of the united statesm many ways donald trump has normalise the abnormal in washington. it is worth stressing that this is some of the most dramatic political theatre and dramatic congressional testimony we have heard the decades in washington. you have to go back to the iran—contra hearings with oliver north. some people are likening it to whenjohn north. some people are likening it to when john dean, north. some people are likening it to whenjohn dean, former aide of richard nixon, appeared before the watergate committee. that gives historical context about how explosive the allegations have been today. one of the most explosive allegations was a revelation that donald trump knew, ahead of time can
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during the 2016 campaign that wikileaks during the 2016 campaign that wikilea ks and its during the 2016 campaign that wikileaks and its founder, julian assange, were about to dump all these e—mails hacked from the democratic national committee, hacked us intelligence believes a course by the russians. that was a new revelation. michael cohen also saying that donald trump ordered him to pay # need to the porn star stormy daniels. that was one of the allegations that michael cohen was found guilty of in a new york court and why he is off to prison. this was jaw-dropping. in terms of some of the evidence you also had conversations around the potential building of trump tower in moscow, comments about racism. which of all of those many, many planks and allegations, which potentially is most perilous for donald trump?”
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think the roger stone allegation is potentially perilous because it does indicate maybe some level of collusion between the trump campaign and the kremlin although michael cohen did not say that explicitly and he did not say he had a smoking gun. all he said was he had suspicions on that front and that is a line that robert miller, the special council, will be pursuing. the allegation that donald trump ordered into the # need payments which is in violation of campaign finance laws, that is evidence of criminality. also about the tax arrangements of donald trump, that he had inflated his income to get onto the forbes rich list but deflated his income when it came to paying taxes. that gives an opening for the democratic committees to start investigating his tax. he has famously refused to
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hand over his tax returns which is what sitting presidents normally do. that opens up an area of potential legal jeopardy for the white that opens up an area of potential legaljeopardy for the white house as well. these hearings are so contested. the democrats have been very supportive of michael cohen. they have turned him into almost a repressive folk hero. reminding people, reminding viewers, reminding voters he is off to prison in may and one of the reasons he is off to prison is because he was found guilty of lying to congress. ultimately a lot comes down to what robert mueller thinks of michael cohen. his team conducted hours of interviews and behind—the—scenes. the republicans have not been so effective today. they have trashed his reputation but what they have
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not been so successful at doing is undermining in challenging the allegations he made against the president. you talk about the republicans and some of their questioning. they were savaging his credibility. a pathological liar. i wa nt to credibility. a pathological liar. i want to play for viewers are a few of the exchanges. you lied on financial documents. you lied to financial documents. you lied to financial institutions in order to secure loans. we have established you lied on your taxes, to banks and you lied on your taxes, to banks and you are convicted of lying to congress. there is not much she will not lie about when you stand to gain from it. that was repeated by republican after republican. there we re republican after republican. there were other lines of attack. lawmakers accused him of trying to reduce his jail sentence and he was quizzed as to why he worked for the president for so long. how long did you work for donald trump?
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approximately a decade. ten years? that is correct. you said all the bad things about the president in the last 30 minutes and you worked for him for ten years? all those bad things. i can see you working for him for ten days, maybe ten weeks. maybe even ten months. you worked for him for ten years. he will have known the republicans would have come after him like that. the white house was saying he was a liar and it would be laughable he would be taken it would be laughable he would be ta ken seriously. it would be laughable he would be taken seriously. is that why he also came armed with documents today? yes, that is right. one of the most effective lines from the republicans was michael cohen had made history by appearing before a congressional committee after he had been convicted and sent to prison for lying to a congressional committee.
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that was a particularly effective line a couple of the republican commerce and deployed. as you say michael cohen has kept the receipt. he came with documentary evidence to prove in his mind the allegations he has made against the president. one thing worth pointing out, how you view the testimony will be determined by a large extent to how you view donald trump. it will be viewed through the prism of the trump presidency. if you are a supporter you're probably write of this is fake news and lies from the disgraced former aide. if you are an opponent you will regard him as a truth telling hero. robert mueller is the special counsel. his determination of what he has said any evidence he has provided is key as he finalises the report he is expected to send to the attorney general of the united states sometime soon. thank you for that
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analysis. the questioning continues on capitol hill. let me take you back live and let's dip in once again. can you think of anything you have to gain from lying at this point that's what they talk about book deal spicy a lot more that you could lose by telling the truth today. given the threats and other things that have been made against you and your family. that is howl am interpreting it. you brought documents with you as well to bolster the credibility of your testimony. i did want to go back to an earlierline of testimony. i did want to go back to an earlier line of questioning regarding the preparation of your testimony before you came before the intelligence committee. you have talked about a meeting at the white house, where the testimony was being reviewed and i think you said there
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was at least one white house attorney who was there and you acknowledged that there were some edits that were made to your testimony. so on that topic, who, at the white house, reviewed your testimony? i don't know the answer to that. the document was originally created by myself, along with my attorney at the time. there was a joint defence agreement so the document circulated around and i believe it was also reviewed by someone believe it was also reviewed by someone who represents ivanka and jerry kushner. what were the edits that came back when the testimony...
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i don't know. i would have to take a look at the document. do you have a reaction to why there might not have beenin reaction to why there might not have been ina reaction to why there might not have been in a sense a protest as to what would be false testimony being provided. the goal was to stay on message, limit the relationship whatsoever with russia. it was short. there is no russian collusion, no russian deals, that was the message with the same message that existed well before my need to come and testify. so, it is an example of where this idea, this mentality of utopia line whatever the storyline where ever the narrative of the day of the month commit utopia line whether it
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results in false testimony or not. —— you tell the line. results in false testimony or not. -- you tell the line. i toed the party line. iam -- you tell the line. i toed the party line. i am suffering and i will continue to suffer for a while. let me switch gears before my time expires. you may not have direct knowledge of some of these things. you are offering us some very helpful perspectives on how the trump world operates. frankly another reason i find your testimony fairly compelling, incredible, is because a lot of the things you are describing, a lot of the behaviour you are describing is very consistent with what we all see every single day. it is not a leap for us to arrive in the same place of perspective that you presented. i am interested in some of the activities around the inaugural
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committee, the inauguration of the president. there was an article that appeared in pro publica, a watchdog group about pricing of things at the trump hotels. it looks like the re ntal trump hotels. it looks like the rental was being quoted was substantial, even ? what you would expect to pay according to what the market should bear. so, in they were up market should bear. so, in they were up charging to the inaugural. i could not afford to stay there. to think that kind of practice is something that is consistent or inconsistent? is it possible that kind of up charging can be done inside a trump operation? it did happen. all i can say to you as i
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was not part of the inaugural committee. i raised a lot of money for the inauguration but i was not pa rt of for the inauguration but i was not part of it and there was a lot of things in that actually, issues, something that we read about the paper being investigated current moment. thank you. i am sorry for your family is going through. i fear for your family. i see a man trapped. i must tell you that i have arrested several thousand men in you remind me of many of them, but once you have immediately become humble and morsel at the time they are actually booked and while they are incarcerated they are quite penitent
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and then return to their former selves when they are back on the street? so, respectful to selves when they are back on the street? so, respectfulto your family in what they are going through, with honesty that is my sense of view, good sir. i'm going to give you another opportunity to respond what you brushed off earlier regarding your own statement can your honest testimony, hours and 50 seconds in. you stated, regarding your credibility that you had been accused of having no credibility. it was for that reason i spent the last week searching boxes to find the information that i did so you don't have to take my word for it. i want you to look at the documents and make your own decisions. the documents you are referring to are the documents you submitted with your testimony today? is that correct? that is correct. you
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believe them to be worthy of evidence? i leave that to you.

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