The lawyer representing adult film actress Stormy Daniels is demanding the release of audio recordings that Donald Trump’s former lawyer reportedly made of then-presidential candidate discussing payments to a former Playboy model.
The New York Times reported Friday that Michael Cohen secretly recorded a conversation with Trump before the presidential election in which they discussed payments to a former Playboy model who said she had an affair with Trump.
The newspaper, citing lawyers and others familiar with the recording, said the FBI seized the recording this year during a raid on Cohen’s office.
Daniels’ attorney Michael Avenatti again demanded the release of the purported tapes on Friday.
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“Here is what I said less than two months ago,” Avenatti said on Twitter. “I demanded the release of what I called the #TrumpTapes then, and I am demanding the release of them again now.”
Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, has said she had sex with Trump in 2006, when he was married, but Trump has denied it. Days before the 2016 presidential election, she was paid $130,000 to stay silent in a deal handled by Cohen. She is suing to invalidate the nondisclosure agreement.
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Federal prosecutors in New York are investigating Cohen for possible bank and tax fraud, and for possible campaign law violations linked to a $130,000 payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels and other matters related to Trump’s campaign, a person familiar with the investigation has told Reuters.
Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani told the Times that Trump had discussed the payments with Cohen on the tape but that the payments were ultimately never made. He said the recording was less than two minutes and demonstrated the president had done nothing wrong.
The former model, Karen McDougal, said she began a nearly yearlong affair with Trump in 2006 shortly after his wife, Melania, gave birth to their son, Barron, the Times said.
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In April, McDougal settled a lawsuit against the owner of the National Enquirer over an agreement that prohibited her from discussing the alleged relationship with Trump.
In August 2016, the tabloid’s parent company, American Media Inc., paid McDougal $150,000 for the rights to her story about the alleged relationship, but the story never ran.
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— with files from Reuters
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