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Treasury inspector general opens review into whether Cohen bank records were leaked

Treasury inspector general opens review into whether Cohen bank records were leaked

Although porn star Stormy Daniels' lawyer claimed to have evidence tying President Donald Trump to Russians during the 2016 US presidential election, special counsel Robert Mueller "apparently" didn't think "it was part of this collusion case", attorney Robert Driscoll said Wednesday on Fox News' "The Ingraham Angle".

The disclosure that Donald Trump's legal fixer Michael Cohen was quietly paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to advise corporations highlights the inability of U.S. laws to prevent secretive "shadow lobbying", analysts said. "Cohen was one of those consultants". AT&T says it "cooperated fully, providing all information requested in November and December of 2017".

The company stated it had complied with special counsel's request for information and that it considered the matter "closed".

"Michael Cohen should not be selling access to the president of the United States".

The report also claimed Novartis paid Cohen's company almost $400,000. "He has disclosed the identities of some of Mr. Cohen's clients and has incorrectly deemed their contractual relationships and corresponding payments to be "possibl [ly] fraudulent and illegal" without any basis to make such assertions". The report, dubbed "Project Sunlight", was published by Michael Avenatti, the lawyer who represents adult-film star Stormy Daniels, who Cohen paid $130,000 to keep quiet about a 2006 affair she said she had with Trump. She has sued both Trump and Cohen.

Avenatti's documents showed Essential received $400,000 from Novartis, which admitted to meeting with special counsel Robert Mueller's probe in November 2017.

Some of the companies that engaged Cohen also had contact with Trump personally. "Mr. Avenatti's conduct in somehow obtaining random bank records and publishing them without proper concern for their accuracy is extremely troubling for the parties in this case, the court, and the public", Ryan said.

Bank records of the company payments to Cohen's firm and payments from Columbus Nova LLC, a New York-based investment firm linked to Russian businessman Viktor Vekselberg should be released, Avenatti said.

A lawyer for Columbus Nova has said Vekselberg had nothing to do with the transaction Avenatti said amounted to $500,000.

Japanese drug maker Takeda to buy Ireland's Shire in $62 billion deal
Takeda said it will launch a "review of the functions undertaken" at Shire's current headquarters in Dublin within the first year. Takeda, meanwhile, has like many Japanese companies been expanding overseas to compensate for slowing growth at home.

They included a subsidiary of Swiss-based drug-maker Novartis, telecom giant AT&T and Columbus Nova, an American firm tied to Russian businessman Victor Vekselberg, who is under USA sanctions. The company couldn't break it's $100,000-per-month contract, however, until the year was up.

He then asked: "Why is Michael Cohen refusing to provide the bank statements to the public if what we have asserted is not true?"

"And now the Treasury Department is investigating to see if any of their employees called the Michael Avenatti tip line and told him about this", York said.

As President Donald Trump took office in early 2017, two corporate behemoths - Swiss drugmaker Novartis and telecommunications company AT&T - were eager to establish ties to an administration that did not operate in the traditional circles of power.

Among the other payments to Cohen were $200,000 from AT&T, whose proposed merger with Time Warner is now before the courts after the Justice Department sued to block the sale.

"This is not the first time that questions have arisen regarding potential interference by this administration in antitrust law enforcement", the lawmakers said. "That's the decision of an independent company and has nothing to do with the White House". This form of consulting grew dramatically under former President Barack Obama, who imposed regulations barring lobbyists from taking government jobs or entering the White House.

"Confirming that Treasury OIG is inquiring into allegations that [Suspicious Activity Report/Bank Activity Act] information has been improperly disseminated", Delmar said.

Novartis not only confirmed it had set up a one-year agreement with Cohen that was "focused on USA healthcare policy matters", but that it was approached by the special counsel's office in November 2017 and asked about the payments. The Kremlin denies meddling in the election. One post said that "despite the tremendous success we are having with the economy & all things else, 91% of the Network News about me is negative (Fake)".


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