Court Deadlines Set Stage for More Russia Probe Details

Giuliani to CNN: Mueller Thinks Manafort Lied About Trump Tower Meeting

Mueller accuses Manafort of lying, but not about Russia collusion

The president has acknowledged "lightly" looking into a Trump Tower project in Moscow but said that broke no law and that he was perfectly within his rights to continue to operate his real estate business at the same time his presidential campaign was picking up steam.

The special counsel and federal prosecutors in NY are filing court memos detailing the cooperation of longtime Trump legal fixer Michael Cohen, who has admitted lying to Congress and orchestrating hush-money payments to protect the president.

"AFTER TWO YEARS AND MILLIONS OF PAGES OF DOCUMENTS (and a cost of over $30,000,000), NO COLLUSION!" the president said.

Mueller's office has been tasked with investigating whether anyone in Trump's campaign conspired with the Russians who were waging those "active measures" against the United States and the West.

Yet the most precarious legal situation for Trump appears to be separate from Mueller's inquiry: an assertion by federal prosecutors in NY that Trump directed his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, to make illegal payments during the campaign to silence women alleging extramarital affairs.

But when Cohen pleaded guilty in August to campaign finance violations connected to the payments as well as other charges, he stated in court that he had been directed by Trump. The November 2015 outreach - which Mueller says Cohen did not pursue - appears to be the earliest known effort by Russian Federation to build ties with the Trump campaign.

U.S. prosecutors have revealed that a Russian offered cooperation to Donald Trump's campaign as early as 2015, declaring that the president's ex-lawyer Michael Cohen had provided "relevant" and "substantial" help to the Russia investigation.

Prosecutors said the court's Probation Department estimated that federal sentencing guidelines call for Cohen to serve at least four years in prison.

Erdogan voices Turkey's support to Maduro in Caracas
Maduro expressed hopes that Erdoğan's visit would pave the way for a "new phase" in relations between the two countries. Both leaders are battling financial crises and have clashed with the United States in recent months.

Much of the media coverage after Mueller and federal prosecutors in NY released their filing documents, related to the sentencing of Cohen and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, focused on possible campaign finance crimes by Cohen and Trump related to payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels (real name: Stephanie Clifford) and Playboy model Karen McDougal.

Prosecutors in NY are seeking "substantial" jail time, but Mr Mueller does not recommend additional time behind bars as a result of his inquiry.

In the latest filings Friday, prosecutors will weigh in on whether Cohen deserves prison time and, if so, how much.

Initially, Cohen said his September 2015 comments on Sean Hannity's radio show predicting a "better than likely chance" that Trump would meet Putin that week at the UN General Assembly were "spontaneous and had not been discussed within the campaign".

According to the filing, Manafort lied about his interactions with Russian-Ukranian political consultant Konstantin Kilimnik, Kilimnik's efforts to tamper with witnesses, the circumstances surrounding a $125,000 payment to a firm working for Manafort, and Manafort's contacts with officials in the Trump administration.

But the Mueller team credits Cohen with cooperating with special prosecutors in their investigation into Russian meddling.

Manafort, who has pleaded guilty to several counts, violated his plea agreement by then telling "multiple discernible lies" to prosecutors, they said. Though he has portrayed himself as cooperative, "his description of those efforts is overstated in some respects and incomplete in others", prosecutors said. "Thank you!" Trump wrote. Though Cohen had previously implicated Trump in the payments, the prosecutors now are linking Trump to the scheme and backing up Cohen's allegations.

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