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- House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiff on Monday said that "I don’t get involved in sentencing matters" when asked if he backed Michael Cohen’s request for a delay to his jail term.
- Cohen revealed last week that he had uncovered 14 million files of evidence against President Trump, and requested backing for the delay to sort through the files and answer questions.
- Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison last December for lying to Congress and campaign-finance violations.
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House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiff on Monday said he no plans to help Michael Cohen, after Trump’s former attorney and fixer asked for his jail term to be delayed while lawmakers sort through a trove of new evidence he uncovered.
"I don’t get involved in sentencing matters as a practice. I never have in Congress and that’s been my policy," Schiff told CNN in an interview on Monday.
In a statement last week, Cohen’s attorneys said their client had recently uncovered 14 million files on old computers and phones, which he believes "has significant value to the various congressional oversight and investigation committees."
They wrote to lawmakers that Cohen needs more time to sort through the files before beginning his three year prison sentence on May 6. His lawyers added that a delay would allow him to be "readily accessible and immediately available to answer questions from Congress."
A federal judge in December sentenced Cohen to three years in prison for lying to Congress about the Trump real-estate project in Moscow, which ultimately fell through, and for an array of financial crimes. Those included violating campaign-finance laws by facilitating payouts during the 2016 presidential campaign to silence women who said they had affairs with Trump. The president has denied having any affairs.
Cohen has cooperated with law enforcement agents and lawmakers investigating Trump, testifying to Congress in February that his former boss had instructed him to make the hush money payouts and inflate the value of assets to secure loans.
He testified to Schiff’s House intelligence Committee behind closed doors in late February and early March, with Schiff describing him as "very cooperative."
His jail sentence had been set to begin in March, but was pushed back to enable him to testify.
Cohen’s attorney, Lanny Davis, declined to comment on Schiff’s remark.
Davis said that in the letter to lawmakers last week he had requested them to send their letters supporting Cohen’s request to Cohen’s attorneys, and "did not ask members of Congress to communicate with the court or prosecutors nor imply any quid pro quo regarding Mr. Cohen’s willingness to cooperate."
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