Ex-Federal Prosecutor Claims Cohen Had No ‘Truthful’ Evidence Against Trump

Former federal prosecutor Robert Costello advised Michael Cohen when he was being investigated by prosecutors in New York’s Southern District. On Wednesday, Costello testified to Congress that Cohen told him he had “nothing truthful” that would implicate former President Donald Trump in a crime.

Costello’s testimony before the House Judiciary Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government challenges claims Cohen made during Trump’s Manhattan trial, with Costello asserting that Cohen is now on a “revenge tour” against Trump and lacks credibility.

Cohen had testified Monday that Trump directed him to pay for a nondisclosure agreement with porn star Stormy Daniels and approved the plan to reimburse him. These allegations underlie the falsifying business records charges central to Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s case against Trump.

On Tuesday, Cohen claimed Costello told him he could set up “backchannel” communications with Trump through Rudy Giuliani. The jury saw emails between Costello and Cohen where Costello suggested he could relay messages to Trump.

However, Costello told the subcommittee that he advised Cohen in 2018 and that he could quickly resolve his legal issues if he had truthful information implicating Trump. According to Costello, Cohen repeatedly told him “I swear to God Bob I don’t have anything on Donald Trump.”

“Throughout this two-hour interview, Michael Cohen made clear that this payment to Daniels was his own idea designed to try and get him back into the inner circle of Trump people in Washington,” Costello testified. He said Cohen is now attacking Trump as “revenge” for losing his law license and going to jail.

Costello spoke more broadly about “lawfare” against Trump, saying in his 51 years as a lawyer, he has never seen such “politically motivated cases” brought during a presidential election season.

Cohen is scheduled to retake the stand Thursday for continued cross-examination by Trump’s defense attorney.