Trump Org. CFO mentioned in Michael Cohen tape called by grand jury to testify: WSJ 

  • A federal grand jury investigating President Donald Trump's former personal lawyer has subpoenaed the chief financial officer of Trump's company, Allen Weisselberg, to testify, a new report said Thursday.
  • The Wall Street Journal said that Weisselberg is considered a witness in the ongoing probe of Trump's ex-attorney Michael Cohen.
  • Weisselberg was mentioned by Cohen in a conversation that Cohen secretly recorded with Trump in September 2016 that discussed buying the rights to the story of Playboy model Karen McDougal, who claims she had an affair with the president. Audio of that conversation was aired earlier this week by CNN.

A federal grand jury investigating President Donald Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen for possible crimes has subpoenaed the chief financial officer of Trump's company, Allen Weisselberg, to testify, a new report said Thursday.

The Wall Street Journal, citing sources familiar with the case, said that Weisselberg, who is an executive of the Trump Organization, is considered a witness in the ongoing probe of Trump's ex-attorney Michael Cohen.

The newspaper said it is not clear if Weisselberg has already testified to the grand jury, which is meeting in New York City.

Weisselberg, 70, was mentioned by Cohen in a conversation that Cohen secretly recorded with Trump in September 2016 that discussed buying the rights to the story of Playboy model Karen McDougal, who claims she had an affair with the president. The recording of that conversation was aired earlier this week by CNN.

Cohen is heard on the tape telling Trump that he needed to set up a company to make the payment, adding, "I've spoken to Allen Weisselberg about how to set the whole thing up."

The payment to McDougal was never made, according to Rudy Giuliani, Trump's current lawyer. Giulani has said that Trump waived attorney-client privilege for that tape, which had been seized by FBI agents when they raided Cohen's office and residences in New York City in April.

Last year, according the Journal, Weisselberg arranged for the Trump Organization to pay Cohen a monthly retainer of $35,000 after Cohen had paid porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000 on the eve of the 2016 presidential election in exchange for her silence about an alleged affair with Trump. Weisselberg had not known about the hush money payment to Daniels, according to a source quoted by the Journal.

Weisselberg, after Trump's election in 2016, was put in charge of the Trump Organization and the president's assets along with Trump's sons, Donald Jr. and Eric.

The Journal noted that Weisselberg was once described by a person close to the company as "the most senior person in the organization that's not a Trump."

Weisselberg previously worked for Trump's father Fred in the elder Trump's real estate firm in the 1980s. He later was hired by the Trump Organization, where he reported directly to Donald Trump, the newspaper reported.

The White House and a spokeswoman for the Trump Organization did not immediately respond to requests for comment by CNBC about the Journal's story. A request for comment from Weisselberg by CNBC was not immediately responded to.

Cohen is being investigated by federal prosecutors for the payment to Daniels, as well as for the National Enquirer's own payment for McDougal's story before the election. The Trump-friendly supermarket tabloid never published McDougal's account of the affair.

Cohen's business dealings also are being eyed by prosecutors. He has not been criminally charged.

Trump has denied having sex with Daniels. The White House has denied he had sex with McDougal.

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