Donald Trump admits paying for 'hush money' given to porn star Stormy Daniels

Andy Wells
Freelance Writer
Donald Trump paid back hush money given to Stormy Daniels (Rex)

Donald Trump has admitted paying for the $130,000 (£95,000) ‘hush money’ attorney Michael Cohen gave to porn star Stormy Daniels 

The President insisted that cash came from a ‘monthly retainer’ – and not come from his campaign funds.

He tweeted that the agreement ‘was used to stop the false and extortionist accusations made by her [Ms Daniels] about an affair’.

Trump told reporters several weeks ago that he did not know about the payment to Ms Daniels as part of a non-disclosure agreement she signed days before the 2016 presidential election.

 

Former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani told Fox News’ Sean Hannity that Trump’s lawyer that the money to repay Michael Cohen had been ‘funnelled… through the law firm and the President repaid it’.

When asked if Mr Trump knew about the arrangement, Mr Giuliani said: ‘He didn’t know about the specifics of it, as far as I know.

‘But he did know about the general arrangement, that Michael would take care of things like this, like I take care of things like this for my clients.

Trump’s new lawyer, Rudy Giuliani said the President did not know the specifics of the payment (Rex)
Ms Daniels claims to have had a sexual encounter with Trump in 2006 (Rex)

‘I don’t burden them with every single thing that comes along. These are busy people.’

Mr Giuliani, who joined Trump’s legal team last month, said the President had repaid Mr Cohen over several months, indicating the payments continued through at least the presidential transition, if not into his presidency.

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He also said the payment ‘is going to turn out to be perfectly legal’ because ‘that money was not campaign money’.

However, Ms Daniels’s lawyer, Michael Avenatti, called the comment ‘a stunning revelation’.

The President has denied having an affair with Ms Daniels

He said: ‘Mr Trump evidently has participated in a felony and there must be serious consequences for his conduct and his lies and deception to the American people.’

Ms Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, says she had a sexual encounter with Trump in 2006 and was paid to keep quiet as part of a nondisclosure agreement she is now seeking to invalidate.

Ms Daniels’s lawyer, Michael Avenatti (right) said Trump had ‘participated in a felony’ (Rex)

She has also filed a defamation suit against Trump after he questioned a composite sketch she released of a man she says threatened her to stay quiet about the encounter with the President.

The White House has said Trump denies having a relationship with Ms Daniels.

Trump said he did not know why Michael Cohen had made the payment in the first place (Rex)

Mr Cohen’s payment to Ms Daniels in the weeks leading up to the presidential election could be cast as an illegal contribution but not if he were acting on the President’s behest and with his money.

The revelation from Mr Giuliani came as Mr Cohen is facing a criminal investigation in New York over the payment.

Ms Daniels’s lawsuit over the hush deal has been delayed, with the judge citing the criminal investigation under way.