Michael Cohen sentenced to 3 years for crimes committed as Trump’s lawyer

A federal judge in Manhattan sentenced President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen to 3 years in federal prison on Wednesday. Cohen previously pleaded guilty to numerous criminal charges related to lying to Congress and violating campaign finance law through paying hush money to women who allegedly had sexual affairs with Trump.

Cohen, 52, faced two separate cases ― one from U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York and another from special counsel Robert Mueller’s office ― covering a range of criminal offenses.

“I take full responsibility for each act that I pled guilty to: the personal ones to me and those involving the president of the United States of America,” Cohen reportedly told the judge before his sentencing. He said he had been living “in a personal and mental incarceration ever since the day that I accepted the offer to work for a real estate mogul.”

Responding to a Trump tweet that called him weak, Cohen said that he was weak because “time and time again I felt it was my duty to cover up his dirty deeds.”

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Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen pleads guilty
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Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen pleads guilty
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 21: Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump's former personal attorney and fixer, exits federal court, August 21, 2018 in New York City. Cohen reached an agreement with prosecutors, pleading guilty to charges involving bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance violations. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
U.S. Deputy Attorney Robert Khuzami speaks to the media outside the the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Court House after U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen plead guilty to eight criminal counts in lower Manhattan, New York City, U.S. August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
Michael Cohen, former personal lawyer to U.S. President Donald Trump, center, exits from federal court in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018. Trump's longtime lawyer and fixer�Michael Cohen�appeared in federal court Tuesday pleading guilty to federal charges stemming from hush payments to women who claimed to have had affairs with the president. Photograph: Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg via Getty Images
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 21: A crowd gathers before Michael Cohen, former lawyer to U.S. President Donald Trump, exits the Federal Courthouse on August 21, 2018 in New York City. Cohen admitted to violating federal campaign finance laws at the direction fo then-Presidential candidate Trump. (Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 21: A woman seen inside the Federal Courthouse before Michael Cohen, former lawyer to U.S. President Donald Trump, exits the Federal Courthouse on August 21, 2018 in New York City. Cohen admitted to violating federal campaign finance laws at the direction fo then-Presidential candidate Trump. (Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen, leaves the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Court House in lower Manhattan, New York City, U.S. August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar
U.S. Deputy Attorney Robert Khuzami walks to speak to the media outside the the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Court House after U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen plead guilty to eight criminal counts in lower Manhattan, New York City, U.S. August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar
U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen, leaves the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Court House in lower Manhattan, New York City, U.S. August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar
U.S. Deputy Attorney Robert Khuzami speaks to the media outside the the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Court House after U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen plead guilty to eight criminal counts in lower Manhattan, New York City, U.S. August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar
U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen, leaves the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Court House in lower Manhattan, New York City, U.S. August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen, leaves the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Court House in lower Manhattan, New York City, U.S. August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar
U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen, arrives to his apartment building after attending the federal court in New York City, U.S. August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz
Robert Khuzami (R), Deputy US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, speaks to the press outside federal court on August 21, 2018 in New York, after Michael Cohen, Donald Trump's longtime personal lawyer and fixer, pleaded guilty to eight counts, including fraud and campaign finance violations. (Photo by Don Emmert / AFP) (Photo credit should read DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 21: Michael Cohen, former lawyer to U.S. President Donald Trump, exits the Federal Courthouse on August 21, 2018 in New York City. Cohen reached an agreement with prosecutors, pleading guilty to charges involving bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance violations.(Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 21: Michael Cohen, former lawyer to U.S. President Donald Trump, exits the Federal Courthouse on August 21, 2018 in New York City. Cohen reached an agreement with prosecutors, pleading guilty to charges involving bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance violations.(Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 21: Police gather before Michael Cohen, former lawyer to U.S. President Donald Trump, exits the Federal Courthouse on August 21, 2018 in New York City. Cohen reached an agreement with prosecutors, pleading guilty to charges involving bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance violations. (Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 21: Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump's former personal attorney and fixer, exits federal court, August 21, 2018 in New York City. Cohen reached an agreement with prosecutors, pleading guilty to charges involving bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance violations. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Michael Cohen, former personal lawyer to U.S. President Donald Trump, exits from federal court in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018. Trump's longtime lawyer and fixer�Michael Cohen�appeared in federal court Tuesday pleading guilty to federal charges stemming from hush payments to women who claimed to have had affairs with the president. Photograph: Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg via Getty Images
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Federal prosecutors recommended last week that Cohen serve 42 months in prison for his crimes, rejecting the notion he should be given leniency for pleading guilty and providing information to authorities. Mueller’s office, however, detailed in their pre-sentencing filing how Cohen had offered extensive assistance to their investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election. 

Cohen’s lawyers had requested that their client serve no time in prison, stating in a court filing that his cooperation with prosecutors was extensive and that he gave seven interviews to Mueller’s team. Cohen told the special counsel’s office about the Trump Organization’s real estate plans in Moscow, and also outlined his own contacts with Russian interests during the presidential campaign.

The FBI raided Cohen’s office, hotel room and home in April of this year, making him a key figure in Mueller’s probe. Since then, he has pleaded guilty in multiple cases that include payoffs to porn star Stormy Daniels and Playboy playmate Karen McDougal, as well as lying to congressional committees about the Trump Organization’s proposed projects in Russia.

Cohen acted as Trump’s fixer for years, carrying out tasks that ranged from overseas business negotiations to trying to kill negative press coverage. Federal prosecutors stated in a court filing last week that during the presidential campaign, Trump directed Cohen to pay off women who alleged they had sex with Trump while he was married to his wife, Melania. Cohen told a Manhattan court in August that he paid Daniels $130,000 during the 2016 campaign to have her stay quiet about her alleged affair with Trump.

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Michael Cohen, Stormy Daniels hush payment scandal
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Michael Cohen, Stormy Daniels hush payment scandal
Adult-film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels speaks to the media outside US Federal Court on April 16, 2018, in Lower Manhattan, New York. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen has been under criminal investigation for months over his business dealings, and FBI agents last week raided his home, hotel room, office, a safety deposit box and seized two cellphones. Some of the documents reportedly relate to payments to porn star Stormy Daniels, who claims a one-night stand with Trump a decade ago, and ex Playboy model Karen McDougal who also claims an affair. / AFP PHOTO / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen arrives at federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Michael Avenatti, lawyer for adult film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, leaves federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Michael Cohen's attorney Todd Harrison arrives at federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar
U.S. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen (centre) leaves federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan Mcdermid
Adult film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels speaks to media along with lawyer Michael Avenatti (R) outside federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Michael Cohen's attorney Todd Harrison is pictured outside the Manhattan Federal Court in New York City, New York, U.S., April 13, 2018. REUTERS/Jeenah Moon
U.S. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen exits a hotel in New York City, U.S., April 11, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
Adult film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, speaks to media along with lawyer Michael Avenatti (R) outside federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan Mcdermid
Attorney for Stormy Daniels, Michael Avenatti is pictured though a window as he arrives at federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Adult-film actress Stormy Daniels and attorney Michael Avenatti arrive at Federal Court in New York, U.S., on Monday, April 16, 2018. Daniels claims she had sex with Donald Trump in 2006 and took a $130,000 hush payment shortly before the 2016 election from lawyer Michael Cohen. Photographer: Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg via Getty Images
President Trumps lawyer Michael Cohen exits the US Federal Court on April 16, 2018, in Lower Manhattan, New York. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen has been under criminal investigation for months over his business dealings, and FBI agents last week raided his home, hotel room, office, a safety deposit box and seized two cellphones. Some of the documents reportedly relate to payments to porn star Stormy Daniels, who claims a one-night stand with Trump a decade ago, and ex Playboy model Karen McDougal who also claims an affair. / AFP PHOTO / EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ (Photo credit should read EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)
Adult-film actress Stephanie Clifford, (C) also known as Stormy Daniels arrives for a court hearing at the US Courthouse in New York on April 16, 2018. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen has been under criminal investigation for months over his business dealings, and FBI agents last week raided his home, hotel room, office, a safety deposit box and seized two cellphones. / AFP PHOTO / Hector RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Attorney for Stormy Daniels, Michael Avenatti(C), arrives for a court hearing at the US Courthouse in New York on April 16, 2018. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen has been under criminal investigation for months over his business dealings, and FBI agents last week raided his home, hotel room, office, a safety deposit box and seized two cellphones. / AFP PHOTO / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 13: Michael Avenatti (R), attorney for Stormy Daniels, arrives for a court proceeding regarding the search warrants served on President Donald Trump's longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen, at the United States District Court Southern District of New York, April 13, 2018 in New York City. Cohen and his lawyers are asking the court to block Justice Department officials from reading documents and materials related to his relationship with President Donald Trump that they believe should be protected by attorney-client privilege. Officials with the FBI, armed with a search warrant, raided Cohen's office and two private residences earlier in the week. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
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Cohen’s court date Wednesday is the first of three high-profile sentencing hearings for former Trump officials. Former national security adviser Michael Flynn, who Mueller’s office recommended receive no prison time due to his cooperation, will receive his sentence on Dec. 18. Meanwhile, Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort will have to wait until March for his sentencing after Mueller’s office outlined last week how he lied to investigators and violated his plea deal in a court filing last week.

Although Trump would have the power to pardon Cohen, the prospect is extremely unlikely. Trump turned on Cohen after his former lawyer began assisting Mueller, and has publicly berated him as weak and stupid. Earlier this month, Trump tweeted that Mueller should serve a “full and complete sentence.”

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
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