When the FBI conducted a raid on the hotel and office of President Donald Trump’s attorney Michael Cohen, one of their goals was to collect all documents related to the infamous ‘Access Hollywood’ tape released during the 2016 presidential election, according to sources who spoke with The New York Times.
The search warrant also sought evidence of whether the lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, tried to suppress damaging information about Mr. Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign.
It is not clear what role, if any, Mr. Cohen played regarding the tape, which was made public a month before the election. But the fact that the agents were seeking documents related to the tape reveals a new front in the investigation into Mr. Cohen that is being led by the United States attorney’s office in Manhattan.
Also sought by federal authorities were documents related to payments Cohen made to two women who claim to have had affairs with Trump -- adult film actress Stephanie Clifford (aka Stormy Daniels) and Playboy model Karen McDougal.
The new details from the warrant reveal that prosecutors are keenly interested in Mr. Cohen’s unofficial role in the Trump campaign. And they help explain why Mr. Trump was furious about the raid. People close to Mr. Trump and Mr. Cohen regard the warrant as an attempt by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, to pry into Mr. Trump’s personal life — using other prosecutors as his proxy.