President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen is expected to tell lawmakers this week about alleged criminal conduct Trump committed while in office, NBC News reported, citing a knowledgeable source.
Cohen starts a three-day gantlet of congressional appearances on Tuesday by giving a closed-door interview to the Senate Intelligence Committee. He is expected to detail what he claims to know about Trump’s contacts with Russia, hush payments made before the 2016 election and other sensitive matters.
Cohen is expected to provide evidence of alleged criminal conduct by Trump since he became president, NBC News said. In addition to his testimony, Cohen will reveal information about Trump’s financial statements, according to NBC, citing a source who declined to be named.
The former Trump lawyer and fixer, who is slated to report to federal prison May 6, will also testify in a closed-door hearing with the House Intelligence Committee on Thursday. The main event of the week will happen Wednesday, however, as Cohen is scheduled to testify in public before the House Oversight Committee.
In testimony this week, Cohen is prepared to describe behind-the-scenes anecdotes about Trump that include lies, racism and cheating as a private businessman when Cohen worked for him for 10 years, NBC News said, citing the source.
Likewise, Cohen plans to tell lawmakers that Trump asked him several times about a proposed skyscraper project in Moscow long after he secured the Republican presidential nomination, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters.
Cohen’s assertion that Trump was inquiring about the project as late as June 2016, if true, would show Trump remained personally interested in a business venture in Russia well into his candidacy. Cohen, scheduled to report to prison in May after pleading guilty to charges including lying to Congress, has already said he briefed Trump on the project in June 2016.
Cohen will also discuss his own motives for lying for the president and why he decided to tell the truth publicly for fear of his family and country, NBC said.
Senators are suspicious of Cohen, who is set to serve time in prison for lying to the committee in 2017. But they are also eager to hear what Trump’s former loyal fixer has to say.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr, R-N.C., told The Associated Press that senators will have staff ask questions in Tuesday’s session but will be there to observe. He says no topics will be off limits and that Cohen “should expect to get any question from anywhere about anything.”
Cohen pleaded guilty to several charges last year – in cases brought by the Southern District of New York and special counsel Robert Mueller’s office – including financial crimes, lying to Congress and campaign-finance violations linked to hush-money payments given to two women who claimed they had sexual encounters with Trump.
Cohen implicated Trump in his campaign-finance confession. Trump has denied the affairs and all wrongdoing.
A White House representative did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
—The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to the report.