Peter Stone and Greg Gordon of McClatchy DC report that sources close to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election say that authorities have obtained evidence proving that President Trump's personal attorney, Michael Cohen, did in fact make a trip to Prague after denying he had ever been there. If true, this would confirm at least one aspect of the infamous Steele dossier which claims that Cohen had met in Prague with Russian operatives during the 2016 election to coordinate election tampering.
"Confirmation of the trip would lend credence to a retired British spy’s report that Cohen strategized there with a powerful Kremlin figure about Russian meddling in the U.S. election.
It would also be one of the most significant developments thus far in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of whether the Trump campaign and the Kremlin worked together to help Trump win the White House. Undercutting Trump’s repeated pronouncements that “there is no evidence of collusion,” it also could ratchet up the stakes if the president tries, as he has intimated he might for months, to order Mueller’s firing.
Trump’s threats to fire Mueller or the deputy attorney general overseeing the investigation, Rod Rosenstein, grew louder this week when the FBI raided Cohen’s home, hotel room and office on Monday. The raid was unrelated to the Trump-Russia collusion probe, but instead focused on payments made to women who have said they had sexual relationships with Trump.
Cohen has vehemently denied for months that he ever has been in Prague or colluded with Russia during the campaign. Neither he nor his lawyer responded to requests for comment for this story.
It’s unclear whether Mueller’s investigators also have evidence that Cohen actually met with a prominent Russian – purportedly Konstantin Kosachev, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin — in the Czech capital. Kosachev, who chairs the Foreign Affairs Committee of a body of the Russian legislature, the Federation Council, also has denied visiting Prague during 2016. Earlier this month, Kosachev was among 24 high-profile Russians hit with stiff U.S. sanctions in retaliation for Russia’s meddling."
Cohen, and President Trump, have adamantly denied that Cohen had ever been to Prague.
If these reports are true, it could potentially indicate collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian officials indeed occurred during the 2016 election.