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In a deal with prosecutors, Michael Cohen - a close aide of Trump for a decade and his former personal lawyer - pleaded guilty in a federal court in NY to bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance violations.

Earlier on Wednesday, Davis told CNN that Cohen has knowledge that would be of interest to Special Counsel Robert Mueller in the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and whether there was collusion with Trump or members of his campaign.

Mr Trump has granted presidential pardons to conservative commentator Dinesh D'Souza and former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, but Cohen attorney Lanny Davis said his client would not accept a presidential pardon. Cohen even reportedly said he would take a bullet or jump out of a building for Trump.

Trump's former lawyer is on a fast track to being disbarred in NY following his guilty plea Tuesday on 8 federal counts, including tax evasion and campaign law violations. according to a source familiar with the process. Cohen is already facing four to five years behind bars.

In court on Tuesday, Cohen said he made payments to influence the 2016 election at the direction of a candidate for federal office.

Davis might have been referring to the GoFundMe page titled "Michael Cohen Truth Fund". Trump made the claim without offering any evidence.

Violations of campaign finance law can be handled as a civil matter by the FEC or as a criminal matter by the Justice Department.

Cohen is also said to be willing to tell Mueller that Trump knew in advance of a 2016 meeting at Trump Tower in which the Republican candidate's eldest son sought damaging information from a Russian lawyer about Hillary Clinton.

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Paul Manafort, Trump's ex-campaign manager, was convicted of financial fraud and faces a further trial in September. A set of talking points distributed by Republican leadership on Wednesday morning instructed pundits to remind interviewers "there is still no evidence of collusion" and the legal developments have "nothing to do with collusion with Russian Federation".

A lawyer for Cohen took aim at Trump, saying they would refuse a pardon if it were offered.

Two men formerly very close to Donald Trump have been found guilty of fraud and violating campaign finance laws.

That's where the second part of Trump's tweet, drawing a comparison between Cohen's guilty plea and a campaign finance violation by President Barack Obama's 2008 campaign, falls apart.

"He's without resources", Davis added before mentioning a website he said was a way for people to "help" his client.

"It's a witch hunt and it's a disgrace", Trump said Tuesday of the Manafort verdict.

"Any effort to pardon Michael Cohen or Paul Manafort in and of itself would be a gross assault on the rule of law, and constitute high crimes and misdemeanors", Wyden said, quoting the prerequisite for impeachment in Section 4, Article 2 of the U.S. Constitution. Days later, Trump issued a clarification that he believed the assessment of top American intelligence officers. He will be sentenced in December. It made him question the president's loyalty.

In the president's view, Manafort is "brave", and Cohen is a bad lawyer who, Trump incorrectly asserted, pleaded guilty to "violations" that "are not a crime".


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