Ethics director forwards concerns to federal prosecutors over Michael Cohen payment

Donald Trump lawyer Ty Cobb retire Bill Clinton impeachment attorney Emmett T. Flood

Donald Trump lawyer Ty Cobb retire Bill Clinton impeachment attorney Emmett T. Flood

United States president Donald Trump acknowledged for the first time in an ethics disclosure released on Wednesday that he repaid more than $100,000 (€84,575) to former personal attorney Michael Cohen, renewing questions about Mr Trump's ties to porn star Stormy Daniels.

Giuliani revealed earlier this month Trump repaid Cohen for the $130,000 he spent as a part of a non-disclosure agreement in October 2016.

Murky dealings: Cohen has said he paid $130,000 out-of-pocket to Daniels to buy her silence ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

Trump claimed he was unaware of Cohen's payment to Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, until his new lawyer Rudy Giuliani revealed earlier this month that the president had reimbursed Cohen.

"Mr. Cohen sought reimbursement of those expenses and Mr. Trump fully reimbursed Mr. Cohen in 2017", it said.

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The document, signed by the President and released by the US Office of Government Ethics, did not described the objective or the recipient of the payment made by Cohen, Xinhua news agency reported.

In his annual disclosure of personal finances, President Trump acknowledged that he paid lawyer Michael Cohen between $100,000 and $250,000 past year.

That was followed by a "60 Minutes" interview with Daniels; the release of a lie detector test for a celebrity magazine that concluded she was telling the truth about having unprotected sex with Trump; the creation of a forensic sketch of a man who allegedly threatened the actress to stay quiet about Trump; and a defamation suit against the president. Sater told Yahoo News he provided the texts to investigators voluntarily and without a subpoena.

President Trump's newly released financial disclosure is raising questions about the controversy over hush money paid to a porn star.

"Not a lick. We're completely uninvolved in that". Trump owes Deutsch Bank as much as $175 million.

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Swiss drugmaker Novartis AG said it had paid Cohen almost $1.2 million; US telecommunications company AT&T Inc said it made payments of $600,000; and South Korea's Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd said it hired him for $150,000.

Yahoo News reported that while Cohen claimed he stopped pursuing Trump World Tower Moscow in January 2016, text messages and emails obtained by prosecutors and congressional investigators suggest he was still working on the deal in May 2016, when Trump was cinching the Republican presidential nomination.

Ethics experts say that if that money isn't disclosed, Trump could be in violation of ethics laws for failing to disclose a reportable item, a violation for which others have been prosecuted.

How a global powerhouse like Novartis could get entangled in controversy with Trump's personal fixer highlights the way established lines of doing business have been upended by the unorthodox new president.

The Mar-a-Lago resort, where the president frequently escaped for winter weekends, collected more than $25 million last year, down from $37 million from last year's report.

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