Preet Bharara predicts the likelihood that Michael Cohen is going to be charged is “high.”
Cohen, who is President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, had his home and office raided by the FBI on Monday.
“If I were still the United States attorney, no matter who the president was, and I was being asked to personally approve, as someone had to have been in the Southern District of New York, a search of someone’s home and office who was counsel to the president – I would want a lot more than the bare minimum proof of probable cause,” Bharara, a CNN senior legal analyst who’s a former US attorney, said on CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360” Tuesday night.
“So I predict, as we saw with Paul Manafort, that if they decided they had enough evidence to engage in a very aggressive, a very aggressive move, that the likelihood that Michael Cohen is going to be charged is high,” Bharara added.
One source familiar with the matter told CNN that included in the documents authorities seized Monday was information related to porn actress Stormy Daniels, who Cohen had paid $130,000 prior to the 2016 election in exchange for her silence about an alleged affair with Trump a decade before.
A source familiar with the matter said the search warrant was very broad in terms of items sought, and another source said the search included bank records.
In a phone conversation Tuesday with CNN, Cohen said, “I am unhappy to have my personal residence and office raided. But I will tell you that members of the FBI that conducted the search and seizure were all extremely professional, courteous and respectful. And I thanked them at the conclusion.”
CNN’s Don Lemon and Eli Watkins contributed to this report.