In a surprising move Wednesday, Michael Cohen, a former personal attorney to President Trump, split with his legal team representing him in connection with possible campaign finance violations, bank fraud and wire fraud.
According to multiple reports, attorneys Stephen Ryan and Todd Harrison have agreed to end their representation of Cohen effective Friday. Cohen is also expected to cooperate with federal prosecutors for the Southern District of New York in Manhattan, according to sources close to the situation.
A special counsel to Trump involved with various business matters, Cohen has worked with the Trump Organization for over a decade.
The report detailing the split between Cohen and his lawyers follows news stories emerging one day earlier Cohen had been privately revealing to friends he soon expects to be arrested.
Sources say the relationship has been strained over legal bills. The two legal counsels will remain representing Cohen to assist in a review of documents seized during an April raid of Cohen’s home and offices.
Legal experts say the dissolving of ties between client and attorney often signal a plea deal with prosecutors is likely.
Sources say, however, Cohen has not met with prosecutors and he has not been charged with a crime. Cohen denies wrongdoing.
Cohen, 51, has been at the center of an investigation probing his business dealings and a payment of $130,000 to quiet pornographic actress Stormy Daniels, who claims she had an affair with Trump in 2006.
Daniels is believed to have signed an agreement in October 2016 barring her from discussing the relationship with Trump in exchange for the payment.
The White House has repeatedly denied Mr. Trump engaged in an affair with Daniels, but Mr. Trump did acknowledge reimbursing Cohen for the payment.
[CNN] [ABC News] [New York Daily News] [Business Insider] [Photo courtesy Getty Images via Daily Wire]