Facts of Michael Cohen
|Full Name||Michael Cohen|
|Birth Name||Michael Dean Cohen|
|Birth City||Lawrence, Nassau County, New York,|
|Father Name||Maurice Cohen|
|Mother Name||Sondra Cohen|
|Date of Birth||August 25,1966|
Michael Cohen is a former attorney perhaps best known for his involvement with POTUS Donald Trump and the controversy leading to his conviction for fraud and perjury. The ex-lawyer is serving a 3-year sentence for a felony crime.
Cohen was part of the Trump ensemble in the White House before his conviction. The media called him the fixer for Trump, and he was heavily criticized for covering up Stormy Daniels’s and Donald Trump’s scandal by paying Daniels hush money.
Michael Cohen's Huge Fall From $100 Million Net Worth To -$1 Million
As of 2020, Cohen has a net worth of -$1 Million a huge fall from his reported $100 million net worth before his downfall and conviction. The bulk of his net worth comes from owning stakes in the New York Taxi business.
More precisely, he owned Taxi medallions, a type of permit required for cabs to operate. Additionally, he was also an active lawyer and a member of Trump’s inner circle investing with him in various markets.
Involvement Of Michael Cohen In The Donald Trump And Stormy Daniels Scandal
As Donald Trump was running for office in 2016, Cohen, as per reports from The Wall Street Journal Michael Cohen paid a lump sum of $130,000 to Stormy Daniels for a nondisclosure agreement to not reveal the fact that Trump and Daniels had an affair in 2006.
The reports surfaced in January 2018 and caused a huge media uproar. In August 2018, Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to eight criminal charges. He also pleaded guilty to using campaign money for paying off Daniels.
Taxi cabs in New York are a popular means of transport; in fact, a statistic from 2014 reports that approximately 485,000 taxi trips are taken every day in New York. This figure might be smaller with the emergence of Uber And Lyft, but it still remains substantial to New York.
Taxi Medallions In New York
A taxi medallion is a type of permit allowing taxis to operate, and Cohen owns stakes in more than 200 medallions in NYC. Before ride-sharing and ride apps existed, each medallion could be sold for up to $1 million (in 2013 in New York).
The value dropped from a million dollars to $650,000 in 2015, and now one medallion can be bought for as low as $100,000 to $200,000.
In 2019, only 3 medallions were sold in an auction for 16 medallions and for $137,000, $136,000 and $138,000. A huge drop compared to the prices of 2013.
The fall in the value of these medallions contributed hugely to Cohen’s financial downfall. He also managed 260 cabs in NY with another partner in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Taxi drivers were paid $100 per shift at the time.
Later after shifting his focus to Trump, he made Mr. Garber the head of the business and later after a fallout hired Evgeny Freidman. Freidman had to pay $1 million in fines after it was found he used 180 unauthorized cars as taxis.
Taxi Medallions In Chicago
Cohen also invested heavily in the Chicago taxi business, he invested $5.7 million in 22 Chicago taxi medallions, but at the time, Uber and Lyft were coming through the ranks, which meant that the values of these medallions plummeted.
In 2018, the standard cost of a taxi medallion in Chicago cost $30,000 to $100,000. In 2012, these prices ranged from $87,000 to $385,000.
He later used his medallions to borrow money; in fact, he borrowed around $20 million when the sum value of his medallions was $35 million.
Investments In Private Firms And Link To Russia/Ukraine
Michael Cohen was an active investor in various firms all around the world, and most of his investments were in the millions. As a matter of fact, the New York Times reported that he had invested $25 million on a Ukrainian businessman.
The businessman had a shady financial past, and Cohen also had a stake in the businessman’s uncle’s catering hall used frequently by the Russian and Italian mobs.
This link of Cohen to Russia and Ukraine was heavily frowned upon by the public, and he was also investigated for collusion with Russia to rig the 2016 Presidential elections.
Further, he and another Trump lawyer worked for the same Russian Oligarch-Linked Firm. This led to speculation of his involvement in the claims that Russia rigged the 2016 elections.
Investigation By The FBI And Conviction
The FBI raided Cohen's office on April 9, 2018, and various other properties seizing thousands of documents, including emails, tax records, business records, and payment documents relating to the payment made to Stormy Daniels.
Michael pleaded guilty in August 2018 and was convicted of 8 criminal charges. His charges included 5 counts of tax evasion and other felonies. The final judgment made him pay a $50,000 fine, $1.4 million in restitution, and also made him forfeit $500,000.
Houses, Real Estate And Expensive Assets
A mogul in his own right sold 4 Manhattan properties for $32 million in 2014 all in a single day. Similarly, he also got into hot water for allegedly receiving a commission for selling an apartment in Sunny Isles.
Additionally, he also sold a building on Rivington Street for $2.1 million for $10 million an amount 3 times more than what Cohen had paid for it.
He also purchased a York City Apartment for $6.7 Million in July 2018. The property was listed for $7.475 million and covers 2,697 square feet accommodating 4½ bathrooms, a 75-foot lap pool, a fitness center, an arcade, etc. among others.
Michael has always been well off and even rode a Porsche while attending college. In the past, he owned a Bentley.
Rejected Appeal For Shorter Sentence
In March 2020, Cohen was rejected an appeal for getting out early from his 3-year sentence after a federal judge ruled against him. He made the case that the prosecutors would not take his co-operation in exchange because it would mean Donald Trump would get in legal trouble.
He has been trying to get his sentence shortened since 2019, but every appeal has been rejected as of March 2020. Michael’s attorney also argued in a case that his client was at risk of contracting the Coronavirus if he remained incarcerated.
Michael Cohen was born Michael Dean Cohen on August 25, 1966, in Lawrence, Nassau County, New York, U.S. to Maurice Cohen and Sondra Cohen. He has European heritage as his father survived the Holocaust. He belongs to Jewish ethnicity.
When growing up, he attended Woodmere Academy and later joined American University. He graduated from American University in 1988 with a BA degree; later, he went on to get a JD from Thomas M. Cooley Law School in 1991.
Cohen is married to Laura Shusterman in 1994; they have two children together, Samantha and Jake.