Michael Cohen, the private attorney who remains entangled in an ongoing legal spat with Stormy Daniels, visited Mar-a-Lago this past weekend as his legal disputes with the porn actress swelled, two sources told CNN.
In a photograph posted on Instagram, Cohen is seen embracing televangelist Mark Burns, a Trump supporter. Burns posted the photo and said he was happy to see Cohen “2 days ago at #MarALago.”
President Donald Trump was also at the club headlining a series of Republican fundraisers. Cohen was seen on Friday evening greeting guests at a small event held in the Mar-a-Lago ballroom. Trump spoke for about 20 minutes at the event.
It’s not clear whether Cohen spoke directly with Trump. Cohen is not a member of Mar-a-Lago, and isn’t a regular presence at the club.
Neither Cohen nor the White House responded to a CNN request for comment.
The White House has continually attempted to distance Trump from the ongoing saga with Stormy Daniels. White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said on Wednesday that – as far as she knew – Trump wasn’t aware of the $130,000 payment Cohen made to Daniels in 2016.
She said she didn’t know whether Trump had spoken to Cohen about the matter recently.
In the week preceding his visit to Mar-a-Lago, Cohen secretly obtained a restraining order against Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, and pressured her to keep silent, Daniels’ attorney has alleged.
Daniels’ attorney said a private mediator issued the temporary restraining order against Clifford on behalf of Cohen on February 27, and has cautioned Clifford to keep quiet as recently as Wednesday.
Cohen has admitted to paying Clifford the $130,000 out of his own pocket in October 2016, and has insisted that he wasn’t reimbursed by Trump or his campaign. The Wall Street Journal reported last week that Cohen had complained to friends after he made the payment that he hadn’t been reimbursed.
A longtime confidante of Trump’s, Cohen worked at the Trump Organization from 2007 until after Trump won the presidency in November 2016. He has been a fierce defender of the President’s and has regularly appeared on television to advocate for him.
“Michael Cohen would walk across a pit of hot coals for Donald Trump,” one former Trump campaign official said. “He’s the most loyal person in Donald Trump’s orbit that doesn’t have the same DNA as Trump.”
Aside from his dealings with Daniels, Cohen’s also become entwined in the Russia investigation. He was interviewed by the House Intelligence Committee last year.
The event at Mar-a-Lago on Friday evening featured speeches from former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Trump. Trump’s remarks, which lasted around 20 minutes, centered mainly on the economy, according to a person who was in the room.
Trump did not dine with the Republican donors that evening; instead he sat for dinner on the patio with Giuliani and Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman. He delivered a longer speech at a Saturday luncheon in which he praised Chinese President Xi Jinping and mocked his former rival, Hillary Clinton.
He traveled to Florida on Friday with his wife, first lady Melania Trump.
CNN’s MJ Lee contributed to this report.