Michael Cohen postpones congressional testimony because of threats to family from Trump and Giuliani

CNBC | 1/23/2019 | Dan Mangan
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President Donald Trump's former personal lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen is postponing his plan to testify before Congress in February because of concerns about his family's safety, according to Cohen's adviser Lanny Davis.

Davis cited "ongoing threats" to Cohen's family from Trump and the president's current personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, in the decision to postpone his Feb. 7 appearance before the House Oversight Committee.

Appearance - Month - Cohen - Prison - Sentence

That appearance had been set for a month before Cohen is due to surrended to begin a three-year prison sentence for mulitple crimes, some of which relate to Trump.

A spokesman for committee chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., as well as spokesmen for the White House and Giuliani, had no immediate comment on Cohen's decision.

Trump - Week - People - Cohen - Father-in-law

Trump as recently as last week had urged people to "watch" Cohen's father-in-law, Fima Shusterman, who was placed on probation in the mid-1990s after pleading guilty in a case in which he was charged with conspiring to defraud the IRS.

Trump's comments on Cohen last week prompted Cummings and two other top Democratic House committee chairmen to warn the president against trying to "discourage, intimidate or otherwise pressure a witness not to provide testimony to Congress."

Davis - Statement - Wednesday - Cohen - Oversight

Davis, in his statement Wednesday, noted that Cohen had volunteered to testify at the Oversight Committee, where he was expected to share information about Trump.

"Due to ongoing threats against his family from President Trump and Mr. Giuliani, as recently as this weekend, as well as Mr. Cohen's continued cooperation with ongoing investigations, by advice of counsel, Mr. Cohen's appearance will be postponed to a later date," Davis said.

Mr - Cohen - Chairman - Cummings - House

"Mr. Cohen wishes to thank Chairman Cummings for allowing him to appear before the House Oversight Committee and looks forward to testifying at the appropriate time. This is a time where Mr. Cohen had to put his family and their safety first."

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