Senate panel subpoenas Michael Cohen

WASHINGTON – The Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday subpoenaed Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer and longtime fixer, to testify about his relationship with the president.

The move came a day after Cohen refused to testify Feb. 7 before the House Oversight and Reform Committee because of “threats” from the president and his personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani.

Lanny Davis, one of Cohen’s lawyers, confirmed Thursday that he had received a subpoena. The committee didn’t set a date for him to testify, but said it wanted him to do so in February, before he Cohen is due to report to federal prison. Davis did not indicate whether Cohen would challenge the appearance.

Spokesmen for the Senate panel declined to comment.

Cohen didn’t reply to a request for comment.

Cohen has been sentenced to three years in prison for a series of federal crimes, including campaign finance violations, tax evasion and lying to Congress.

For years, Cohen worked as Trump’s most strident defender in legal, business and political matters yet turned on him as federal prosecutors honed in on his business and legal dealings.

Cohen had offered to testify at the House panel voluntarily, but then withdrew. The committee’s chairman, Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., said the panel would hear from Cohen “as sure as night becomes day,” but he hadn’t decided Wednesday whether to issue a subpoena.

“Due to ongoing threats against his family from President Trump and Mr. Giuliani, as recently as this weekend, as well as Mr. Cohen’s continued cooperation with ongoing investigations, by advice of counsel, Mr. Cohen’s appearance will be postponed to a later date,” Lanny Davis, a Cohen spokesman, said Wednesday about the House appearance. “This is a time when Mr. Cohen had to put his family and their safety first.”

Trump has called Cohen a liar and said he was unaware of his criminal activities. Trump suggested investigators should look into Cohen’s father in law. 

Giuliani said on CNN on Sunday that Cohen’s father in law “may have ties to something called organized crime.”

Asked about Cohen’s allegations Wednesday, Trump said at the White House: “He’s only been threatened by the truth.”

Contributing: Eliza Collins

 

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