Acting on Referral from Mueller, FBI Raids Office and Home of Trump's Personal Lawyer Michael Cohen
Federal agents seized emails, tax documents, and other business materials
Federal agents on Monday afternoon raided the offices of President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen—raising suspicions that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has uncovered information about Cohen's legal dealings on behalf of the president, including a payment to an adult film actress.
Cohen said in February that he personally paid Stormy Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, $130,000—just days before the election—in order to keep her silent about a sexual relationship she says she had with the president in 2006.
Acting on a referral from Mueller, who has been investigating the Trump campaign with a focus on Russia's meddling in the election, federal prosecutors obtained a search warrant for Cohen's office. The U.S. Attorney's office then ordered the FBI to seize emails between Trump and Cohen, tax records, and other business documents, according to the New York Times.
In addition to Cohen's law offices, the agents also raided his residence at the Loews Regency hotel in New York, apparently spending several hours on the premises, according to Vanity Fair.
Few details are known about what exactly prompted Mueller to make the referral to the U.S. Attorney's office in New York.
"The payments to Ms. Clifford are only one of many topics being investigated," the Times reported.
The Washington Post reported in March that Mueller was investigating "episodes involving Michael Cohen." The longtime Trump associate had been involved in business negotiations between the Trump Organization and a Russian developer during the campaign, and had emailed President Vladimir Putin's spokesperson about the project.
"The scrutiny of [Cohen's] interactions is another sign of the far-reaching nature of the special-counsel probe, which is examining members of the president's inner circle and aspects of Trump’s past business outreach to Russia," reported the Post last month.