- Jonathan Ernst/Reuters
- Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer and longtime confidant, reportedly used the same pseudonyms in settlements between Republican National Committee fundraiser Elliott Broidy and a Playboy model and between Trump and porn star Stormy Daniels.
- Cohen reportedly paid the Playboy model $1.6 million to keep silent about being impregnated by and having an affair with Broidy.
Michael Cohen, the personal lawyer of President Donald Trump, reportedly used the same pseudonyms for Republican National Committee fundraiser Elliott Broidy and a Playboy Playmate in a settlement deal that he used for Trump and porn star Stormy Daniels in another non-disclosure agreement.
In late 2017, Cohen agreed to pay $1.6 million to a former Playboy model who claimed that she was impregnated by and had an affair with Broidy. The payments, which were handled by Cohen on behalf of Broidy, prohibited the woman from speaking about the affair with the former deputy finance chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC).
The pseudonyms used in the deal to represent Broidy and the woman, “David Dennison” and “Peggy Peterson,” are the same ones used to represent Trump and Daniels in their non-disclosure agreement. Both agreements had separate side letters that listed the real names of the parties.
In the Broidy agreement, Cohen is referred to as Dennis Donohue while the woman’s lawyer, Keith Davidson, is referred to as Paul Patterson. Davidson also represented Stormy Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, in her settlement deal that Cohen facilitated before the 2016 election.
The report of Cohen’s payment to a third woman alleging an affair comes just days after the FBI raided his hotel room, office, and apartment in New York on Monday.
The New York Times reported that the FBI acted on a tip from special counsel Robert Mueller, which was approved and passed along to the US Attorney of the Southern District of New York’s office by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, because it was not tied directly to Mueller’s Russia investigation.
The Washington Post also reported that investigators were looking into whether Cohen committed bank fraud, wire fraud, or violated campaign finance law. Agents who raided Cohen’s properties are said to have sought records of payments made to Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who both say they had affairs with Trump.
The investigators are also reportedly interested in materials connected to the “Access Hollywood” tape that features Trump making lewd remarks about women.
A venture capitalist based in Los Angeles, Broidy resigned from his position at the RNC on Friday after admitting to the relationship.
“At the end of our relationship, this woman shared with me that she was pregnant,” Broidy said to The Wall Street Journal. “She alone decided that she did not want to continue with the pregnancy and I offered to help her financially during this difficult period.”
Cohen and Broidy became close through their work together on Trump’s presidential campaign in 2016 and with the RNC.