Michael Cohen’s former legal adviser tries to discredit him during grand jury testimony
“Today, after delivering all of these documents to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, out of 321 emails, they selected six emails to ask me questions,” Costello said at a press conference. following his testimony on Monday afternoon. “And of course they took them out of context. When they took them out of context, I told the grand jurors – I don’t know if this will end up coming to fruition or not – I told them to ask for the whole package.
Cohen refuted most of Costello’s claims during an interview on MSNBC on Monday night, denying that Costello was ever his attorney, that he ever waived attorney-client privilege, and that he should appear before the grand jury on Wednesday.
“It’s a typical Donald J. Trump game out of the playbook,” Cohen said of Costello’s comments. “Determine how you’re going to muddy the waters as best you can, denigrate the person, denigrate them.”
Costello also claimed that Cohen appeared distraught during a meeting they had and was willing to do “whatever it takes” to avoid jail time.
“Well, he went to jail,” Costello said. “And now he’s on the revenge tour.”
On Monday, Costello said Cohen previously said he didn’t use Trump’s money to make the payment.
“The crux of the matter is that Michael Cohen told us that he was approached by Stormy Daniels’ attorney and that Stormy Daniels had negative information that she wanted to take to court against Trump,” Costello said. “So Michael Cohen decided on his own – that’s what he told us, on his own – to see if he could handle it.”
Cohen then took out a $130,000 home equity loan to make the payment to Daniels, Costello said. But Cohen denied that claim.
“That is absolutely not true. I don’t know what conversations he’s referring to,” Cohen said, when asked if he took out a loan to make the payment. Cohen also said Daniels did not intend to sue, but to release details of the alleged affair.
It was expected that an indictment against the former president could fall as soon as Monday evening. But Costello’s testimony could throw a wrench in that timeline.
“If they want to prosecute Donald Trump and they have solid evidence, so be it,” Costello said. “But Michael Cohen is far from solid evidence.”
Trump’s legal troubles extend beyond Manhattan, however. The former president and 2024 presidential candidate also faces criminal investigations in Atlanta and Washington.