President Donald Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen is hoping to scuttle a nondisclosure agreement with adult film star Stormy Daniels and get his money back. Cohen and his shell company, Essential Consultants, are seeking to avoid further litigation over the deal, which Cohen said was negotiated on Trump’s behalf so Daniels wouldn’t disclose their alleged affair during the presidential election, CNN was the first to report.
But Daniel’s attorney, Michael Avenatti, blasted the move as part of a strategy to keep Trump and Cohen from being disposed in the case and possibly be forced to reveal other stealth payments to quiet other damaging information.
“What they’re trying to do is they don’t want me to get a chance to depose Michael Cohen and Donald Trump,” Avenatti said on CNN’s “Cuomo Prime Time” Friday night. He called it a “Hail Mary to try and avoid that, that’s my first guess.”
A lawyer for Cohen stated in a legal status report filed Friday in Los Angeles federal court that his client “seeks the rescission of the Confidential Settlement Agreement dated October 28, 2016,” The Washington Post reported. The filing included Cohen’s promise not to sue Daniels for any contract breach. He also reserved the right to seek the return of the money.
Attorney Brent Blakely said in statement to CNN that the filing “effectively put an end to the lawsuits,” adding that the “rescission ... will result in Ms. Clifford returning to Essential Consultants the $130,000 she received in consideration, as required by California law.”
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