There was no initial confirmation of the plea deal reported by several media including NBC News and The New York Times, or of the specific charges involved, but Cohen was set to appear in Manhattan criminal court at 4 pm (2000 GMT).
CNN reported that the deal includes prison time for the president’s long-time fixer, who played a behind-the-scenes role in making hush payments to women who claimed to have had affairs with Trump.
The development came on the same day as a former Trump campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, faced a fourth day of deliberations in his tax evasion and bank fraud trial.
A Cohen guilty plea would avoid a high profile trial, but also could require him to cooperate with investigators probing whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia in its efforts to sway the 2016 US presidential elections.
Neither prosecutors in Manhattan nor Cohen’s attorney would comment on the matter.
Guilty pleas are common in the United States when it appears prosecutors have sufficient evidence for a conviction if the case goes to trial.
The FBI raided Cohen’s home and office on a referral from Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is looking into whether Trump sought to obstruct the Russia meddling probe.
Cohen — who once declared he was so loyal he would “take a bullet for the president” — was involved in efforts to hush allegations from a former Playboy model about an affair with Trump.
He also paid $130,000 to porn star Stormy Daniels to silence her own claims of an alleged one-night stand with Trump in 2006, just before the election.
Talk of a plea deal comes days after The New York Times reported that Cohen is also under investigation for potential tax and bank fraud, possibly exceeding $20 million via loans obtained by the taxi medallion business he owns with his family. DM
In other news...
South Africa is in a very real battle. A political fight where terms such as truth and democracy can seem more of a suggestion as opposed to a necessity.
On one side of the battle are those openly willing to undermine the sovereignty of a democratic society, completely disregarding the weight and power of the oaths declared when they took office. If their mission was to decrease society’s trust in government - mission accomplished.
And on the other side are those who believe in the ethos of a country whose constitution was once declared the most progressive in the world. The hope that truth, justice and accountability in politics, business and society is not simply fairy tale dust sprinkled in great electoral speeches; but rather a cause that needs to be intentionally acted upon every day.
However, it would be an offensive oversight not to acknowledge that right there on the front lines, alongside whistleblowers and civil society, stand the journalists. Armed with only their determination to inform society and defend the truth, caught in the crossfire of shots fired from both sides.
If you believe in supporting the cause and the work of Daily Maverick then take your position on the battleground and sign up to Maverick Insider today.
For whatever amount you choose, you can support Daily Maverick and it only takes a minute.
"You at this time can only be destroyed by yourselves from within and not from without. You have reached the point where the victory is to be won from within and can only be lost from within." ~ Marcus Garvey