Former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen sentenced to 3 years in prison

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Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former personal attorney and fixer, arrives at federal court for his sentencing hearing, December 12, 2018 in New York City. (Photo: AFP)

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — US President Donald Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen delivered a blistering attack on his former boss as he was sentenced to three years in prison on Wednesday for multiple crimes.

“It was my duty to cover up his dirty deeds,” Cohen said as he pleaded for leniency before US District Judge William H. Pauley III.

Cohen, 52, said he was taking responsiblity for his crimes “including those implicating the President of the United States of America.”

Cohen’s lawyers had asked for no jail time after he pleaded guilty to tax evasion, making false statements to a financial institution, illegal campaign contributions, and making false statements to Congress.

But Judge Pauley sentenced Cohen to three years in jail.

Among the charges against Cohen was making “hush money” payments to two women who had threatened to go public during the 2016 presidential election campaign with claims they had affairs with Trump.

Trump this week sought to minimize the importance of the payments saying they were a “simple private transaction” and that they were “wrongly” being called campaign contributions.

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