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Trump says former lawyer Cohen's testimony was 'totally false' - AP

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By Reuters
Trump says former lawyer Cohen's testimony was 'totally false' - AP
FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at a Make America Great Again rally at the Civic Center in Charleston, West Virginia, U.S., August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis   -   Copyright  LEAH MILLIS(Reuters)

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that his former attorney Michael Cohen was lying when he testified Trump had directed him to break the law, the Associated Press reported.

Cohen testified in August that Trump had directed him to commit a crime by arranging payments to silence two women who alleged they had affairs with Trump before the 2016 presidential election.

Cohen, who had previously boasted he was the president’s “fixer,” pleaded guilty in August to eight criminal charges including tax evasion, bank fraud and campaign finance violations.

Trump said in the AP interview that Cohen’s testimony was “totally false.” He also minimized Cohen’s role working for him, describing him as “a PR person who did small legal work.”

Trump called it “very sad” that Cohen had struck a deal to “achieve a lighter sentence,” according to the AP.

Lanny Davis, one of Cohen’s lawyers, referred to his tweets when asked by Reuters for comment.

“Under oath (Michael Cohen) acknowledged and took responsibility for (Trump’s) bad behaviour,” Davis wrote, adding Cohen “doesn’t fear the #truth.”

(Reporting by Makini Brice in Washington; Additional reporting by Nathan Layne and Karen Freifeld in New York; Editing by Mohammad Zargham and Peter Cooney)