Donald Trump is to be portrayed as a cheat, a predator and a conman in a bombshell book by his ex-lawyer.
The President’s longtime ‘fixer’ Michael Cohen has promised to spill the beans on Mr Trump’s sordid secrets.
Boasting he ‘knows where the skeletons are’, Cohen is set to release a tell-all book in which he says he will detail deals with corrupt Russian officials, lies to the First Lady and depraved acts in Las Vegas sex clubs.
The former lawyer wrote his memoir – called Disloyal – while in prison and paints the President as a mob boss for whom he did the dirty work as ‘designated thug’.
Cohen once claimed he would ‘take a bullet’ for his employer but his loyalty has since disintegrated.
He is completing the last two years of a three-year prison sentence at home after admitting paying hush money to women who claim they had affairs with the President and lying to Congress about Mr Trump’s business interests in Russia.
But he used his time behind bars, writing on yellow legal notepads, to recount his 12 years at Mr Trump’s side. The White House last night dismissed the book as ‘fan fiction’.
Publishing the foreword to the book yesterday, Cohen claimed: ‘Apart from his wife and children, I knew Trump better than anyone else did.
‘In some ways, I knew him better than even his family did because I bore witness to the real man, in strip clubs, shady business meetings, and in the unguarded moments when he revealed who he really was: a cheat, a liar, a fraud, a bully, a racist, a predator, a con man.
‘He crushed or cheated all who stood in his way, but I know where the skeletons are buried because I was the one who buried them.’
Alluding to what is to come when the book is published next month, Cohen wrote: ‘I stiffed contractors on his behalf, ripped off his business partners, lied to his wife Melania to hide his sexual infidelities, and bullied and screamed at anyone who threatened Trump’s path to power.
‘From [a depraved act] in a sex club in Vegas, to tax fraud, to deals with corrupt officials from the former Soviet Union, to catch and kill conspiracies to silence Trump’s clandestine lovers, I wasn’t just a witness to the President’s rise – I was an active and eager participant.’
Mr Trump has repeatedly called Cohen a liar since they parted ways in 2018. Yesterday, despite being very active on Twitter throughout the day, he was silent on the claims in the book’s preview.
A White House spokesman, however, said Cohen ‘readily admits to lying routinely but expects people to believe him now so that he can make money from book sales’.
In the foreword, Cohen, once vice president of the Trump Organisation, says he had such unique access to the property tycoon that their mobile phone contacts were synchronised.
For more than a decade, he says, he was ‘in and out of Trump’s office on the 26th floor of the Trump Tower as many as fifty times a day, tending to his every demand’. ‘I was Trump’s first call every morning and his last call every night,’ he added.
Borrowing the language of the Mafia, which he says Mr Trump himself uses, Cohen writes: ‘If you want to know how the mob works, you’ve got to talk to the bad guys. I was one of Trump’s bad guys. In his world, I was 100 per cent a made man.’
But Cohen ‘flipped’, he said, and agreed to work with investigators looking into Mr Trump and possible Russian interference in the 2016 election which propelled the former Apprentice host to the Oval Office.
He told a Congress hearing last year that he had lied in the past to protect his boss. Cohen claims Mr Trump wants to be ‘leader for life’ to avoid going to prison and claims the scandals that have engulfed his administration are only the ‘tip of the iceberg’.
According to Cohen, who served his sentence at a prison in Otisville, New York: ‘As the months passed by and I thought about the man I knew so well, I became even more convinced that Trump will never leave office peacefully.
‘The types of scandals that have surfaced in recent months will only continue to emerge with greater and greater levels of treachery and deceit.
‘If Trump wins another four years, these scandals will prove to only be the tip of the iceberg.’
Cohen claims ‘Trump had colluded with the Russians, but not in the sophisticated ways imagined by his detractors’, adding: ‘Trump had cheated in the election, with Russian connivance, as you will discover in these pages, because doing anything – and I mean anything – to ‘win’ has always been his business model and way of life.’
The New York-born lawyer eventually pleaded guilty to eight federal crimes, including paying adult film actress Stephanie Clifford, known as Stormy Daniels, £100,000 in hush money and arranging a £120,000 payment to Playboy model Karen McDougal in exchange for the women not to go public with allegations they had affairs with Mr Trump in the run up to the 2016 vote.