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Michael Cohen takes stand again for cross-examination in Trump trial

Donald Trump’s lawyer is expected on Thursday to resume attacking the credibility of Michael Cohen, the former attorney whose $130,000 hush-money payment to the adult film star Stormy Daniels is at the heart of the criminal trial against the former president.

The defense, led by the Trump lawyer Todd Blanche, previously undercut Cohen’s testimony by portraying him as an out-of-control witness, motivated to provide evidence that could see Trump convicted in an effort to exact retribution after he was left to fend for himself.

“Do you want President Trump to get convicted in this case?” Blanche asked on Tuesday. “Sure,” Cohen replied, keeping his composure under tense questioning about his falling-out with Trump after Cohen was charged by federal prosecutors in a related case in 2018 and Trump abandoned him.

That tenor of cross-examination is expected to continue as Cohen returns to the stand for a third day. Cohen is considered essential because he is the prosecution’s final witness and the only person to give evidence that Trump was involved in covering up the hush-money scheme.

Trump has pleaded not guilty to 34 counts of felony falsification of business records. Prosecutors must prove Trump authorized what he knew to be hush-money repayments to be falsely characterized as “legal expenses” in the Trump Organization’s records, with an intent to commit a second, election crime.

The case against Trump – the first against a US president – stems from his attempts to suppress negative stories about alleged sexual encounters he had with Daniels and others for fear that they could negatively affect his campaign just weeks before the 2016 election.

Cohen has been a significant witness for the prosecution as he recounted how he used a

Read more on theguardian.com