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Trump's former lawyer to testify before Congress

USA TRUMP | 11 de enero de 2019

US President Donald Trump talks to reporters outside the White House in Washington on Thursday, Jan. 10. EFE-EPA/Shawn Thew

Washington, Jan 10 (efe-epa).- Michael Cohen, former personal attorney to President Donald Trump, will appear Feb. 7 before a US congressional committee that is expected to ask questions about the billionaire's dealings with Russia, CNN reported Thursday.

Cohen voluntarily agreed to face the House Oversight Committee after being sentenced last month to three years in prison for tax fraud and campaign finance violations arising from payoffs he made during the 2016 Trump presidential campaign to women who claimed to have had affairs with the then-candidate.

The lawyer also received a two-month sentence, to be served concurrently, after pleading guilty to a charge brought by Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating alleged Russian machinations to help Trump win the 2016 election and possible coordination between the campaign and Moscow.

Cohen admitted to Mueller that he lied when he told a congressional committee that an initiative to build a Trump Tower in Moscow ended in January 2016, months before the real estate mogul secured the Republican presidential nomination.

The attorney acknowledged that discussions about the project continued until 2016 and that Trump and members of his family were aware of those contacts.

In a statement provided to CNN, Cohen said he agreed to answer questions from lawmakers "in furtherance of my commitment to cooperate and provide the American people with answers."

"I look forward to having the privilege of being afforded a platform with which to give a full and credible account of the events which have transpired," the attorney said.

The chair of the Oversight Committee, Rep. Elijah Cummings, publicly thanked Cohen for his willingness to testify.

"I want to make clear that we have no interest in inappropriately interfering with any ongoing criminal investigations, and to that end, we are in the process of consulting with Special Counsel Mueller's office," the Maryland Democrat said.

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