In an upcoming New York civil trial, former President Trump and his one-time confidant Michael Cohen are likely to confront each other in person for the first time since their relationship soured. Cohen, who previously served as the Trump Organization’s executive vice president and chief legal officer, is a key witness in the case led by New York Attorney General Letitia James. Trump is anticipated to be present during Cohen’s testimony, continuing his attendance at the trial, which he has labeled as politically driven.
Cohen initially turned against Trump during inquiries into a pre-election payment meant to silence allegations of an affair. He facilitated a total of $280,000 in payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal on Trump’s behalf. This payment is a focal point in Trump’s separate criminal indictment in New York.
Cohen was sentenced to a three-year prison term for his involvement in the payment scheme but was granted early release due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During his 2018 sentencing, Cohen expressed regret, stating he felt obligated to “conceal Trump’s unsavory actions.”
Since his release, Cohen has transformed into one of Trump’s most outspoken detractors, frequently criticizing him in the media and testifying against him in various settings.