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Report: Michael Cohen Unwittingly Admitted He Pleaded Guilty to ‘a Lie’


President Donald Trump‘s former attorney Michael Cohen reportedly admitted over a recorded phone call that he pleaded guilty to “a lie,” namely tax evasion and bank fraud charges he faced in the Southern District of New York. The bank fraud charge could be traced to the allegation that Cohen “understat[ed] his debt and expenses in an application for a $500,000 home-equity line of credit.”

The Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday that actor/comedian Tom Arnold handed them a recorded phone conversation from March in which Cohen lamented his situation and losing everything just to cover up the Stormy Daniels affair. Cohen, you may remember, also pleaded guilty to campaign finance violations that he said Trump “directed.”

The news dropped mere days before Cohen is scheduled to report to prison. That would be May 6. The phone call in question was reportedly recorded without Cohen’s knowledge.

“My family’s happiness, and my law license […] I lost my business…my insurance, my bank accounts, all for what? All for what? Because Trump, you know, had an affair with a porn star? That’s really what this is about,” Cohen said.

Cohen attorney Lanny Davis replied to the Journal, claiming that Cohen has “taken responsibility for his crimes and will soon report to prison to serve his sentence.

“While he cannot change the past, he is making every effort to reclaim his life and do right by his family and country. He meant no offense by his statements,” Davis added.

Law&Crime reached out to a Davis spokesperson for comment. Team Cohen responded with the same statement as above.

The recording raises new questions about Cohen admitting in court that took “full responsibility for each act that I pled guilty to,” which would include the ones that were called “a lie.”

On the phone call recorded by Arnold, Cohen said “There is no tax evasion,” adding, “And the [home equity line of credit or Heloc]? I have an 18% loan-to-value on my home. How could there be a Heloc issue? How? Right? […] It’s a lie.”

[Image via Yana Paskova/Getty Images]

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Matt Naham is the Senior A.M. Editor of Law&Crime.