In an explosive development that could prove collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow, The New York Times is reporting that a Russian oligarch paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to the same shell company that Michael Cohen used to pay off Stormy Daniels during the 2016 campaign.
According to the report, “A shell company that Michael D. Cohen used to pay hush money to a pornographic film actress received payments totaling more than $1 million from an American company linked to a Russian oligarch and several corporations with business before the Trump administration, according to documents and interviews.”
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Financial records reviewed by The New York Times show that Mr. Cohen, President Trump’s personal lawyer and longtime fixer, used the shell company, Essential Consultants L.L.C., for an array of business activities that went far beyond what was publicly known. Transactions totaling at least $4.4 million flowed through Essential Consultants starting shortly before Mr. Trump was elected president and continuing to this January, the records show.
Among the previously unreported transactions were payments last year totaling about $500,000 from Columbus Nova, an investment firm in New York whose biggest client is a company controlled by Viktor Vekselberg, the Russian oligarch.
All of this news marks another stunning development that appears to connect the explosive Trump controversies together. Stormy Daniels and Russian collusion are no longer separate scandals, as Michael Avenatti underscored on Tuesday.
After significant investigation, we have discovered that Mr. Trump’s atty Mr. Cohen received approximately $500,000 in the mos. after the election from a company controlled by a Russian Oligarc with close ties to Mr. Putin. These monies may have reimbursed the $130k payment.
— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) May 8, 2018
As former Watergate prosecutor Nick Akerman noted on MSNBC a short time ago, “This could prove the conspiracy between the campaign and the Russians.”
"This could prove the conspiracy between the campaign and the Russians' – Watergate prosecutor @nickakerman on latest allegations Michael Cohen took money from Russian Oligarch pic.twitter.com/F6XcrUrp6l
— TheBeat w/Ari Melber (@TheBeatWithAri) May 8, 2018
While there have been plenty of bombshell revelations over the course of the Trump presidency, Tuesday’s news is among the most devastating for this president.
When all is said and done, Stormy Daniels could be the Russian collusion link, with Moscow literally helping Trump pay her to stay silent during the campaign.
You can bet that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is all over this one.