UPDATED 10:39 AM PT — Tuesday, March 19, 2019
Hundreds of pages of redacted search warrants and other documents were unsealed Tuesday per a February ruling by a U.S. district judge.
Last April the FBI raided the home, office, and hotel room of former President Trump attorney Michael Cohen. They seized more than four million electronic and paper files as well as multiple electronic devices, but these warrants also show special counsel Robert Mueller’s interest into Cohen goes further back than previously known.
In July of 2017, agents working for Mueller obtained warrants to search Cohen’s communications just two months into Mueller’s appointment as the head of the Russia probe.
This information was referred to federal prosecutors last February, who — two months later — executed warrants on Cohen’s properties.
Cohen pleaded guilty last summer to failing to report more than four million dollars in income to the IRS, making false statements to financial institutions, and campaign finance violations stemming from money paid to Stormy Daniels as well as a former Playboy model.
Redacted details in the documents include personal information about Cohen, and information about several third parties who cooperated in the inquiry. The documents do, however, include details related to charges against Cohen for tax evasion and bank fraud.
Information related to the ongoing Russia probe was also redacted, which is something Cohen himself declined to speak about during a congressional testimony in February.
“Unfortunately this topic is something that’s being investigated right now by the southern district of New York, and I’ve been asked by them not to discuss it, not to talk about these issues,” he stated.
President Trump himself has continued to deny allegations of Russian collusion, and has repeatedly called the investigation a “witch hunt.”
“But the fact is, there is no collusion and I call it the ‘witch hunt’ — this should never happen to another president, this is so bad for our country, so bad,” said the president.
The warrants and documents were unsealed as part of a petition by members of the media to have the documents released citing “high public interest” in the case.
Cohen is set to begin serving a three-year prison sentence in New York next month.