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Trump lawyer says he paid porn star $130,000 with his own money

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A personal lawyer for President Donald Trump says he paid $130,000 of his own money to grownup movie star Stormy Daniels who as soon as claimed she had an affair with Trump greater than a decade in the past.

The cost to Daniels, whose actual identify is Stephanie Clifford, was made in the course of the 2016 presidential election marketing campaign however the lawyer, Michael Cohen, stated he was working alone and that it was not a marketing campaign expense.

“Neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Ms. Clifford, and neither reimbursed me for the payment, either directly or indirectly,” Cohen stated in an announcement issued on Tuesday night time.

Daniels was quoted as saying in a 2011 interview with In Touch Weekly that she had an affair with Trump after they met at a Lake Tahoe golf event in 2006.

Trump has denied having an affair with Daniels.

The Wall Street Journal first reported in January that Trump lawyer Michael Cohen had paid $130,000 to Daniels in 2016, the 12 months Trump received the presidential election.

In his most detailed account but of what occurred, Cohen stated in his assertion that the cost was a “private transaction”. He didn’t clarify why he made the cost or say whether or not Trump was conscious of it.

The White House referred questions in regards to the cost to Cohen.

Cohen’s assertion was in response to a grievance filed on the Federal Election Commission by the Common Cause watchdog group.

Common Cause argued in its grievance that the cost quantities to a marketing campaign contribution nicely in extra of the $2,700 restrict to the quantity any particular person may give, and it has requested the FEC to implement marketing campaign finance legal guidelines.

“The complaint alleges that I somehow violated campaign finance laws by facilitating an excess, in-kind contribution.  The allegations in the complaint are factually unsupported and without legal merit, and my counsel has submitted a response to the FEC,” Cohen stated.

“Just because something isn’t true doesn’t mean that it can’t cause you harm or damage. I will always protect Mr. Trump,” Cohen stated, including that he wouldn’t remark additional.

Common Cause stated on Wednesday that the timing and circumstances of the cost “make it appear that the hush money was paid to Daniels in an effort to influence the election.” It known as on the FEC to conduct a full investigation.

The FEC confirmed it obtained Common Cause’s grievance and declined to touch upon the case.

Daniels’ supervisor, Gina Rodriguez, informed Reuters that by issuing the assertion, Cohen was in violation of a non-disclosure settlement with Daniels in regards to the matter and that Daniels believes she will now discuss it publicly.

“Yes, Stormy is going to talk,” she stated through direct message on Twitter. She didn’t instantly reply to a query about when and the place Daniels can be talking publicly.

Reporting by Steve Holland and Ginger Gibson in Washington, and Nichola Groom in Los Angeles; modifying by Kieran Murray

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