Co­hen en­tity of­fers to re­scind hush-money pact with Daniels

South Florida Sun-Sentinel (Sunday) - - Nation & World -

WASHINGTON — The com­pany set up by Don­ald Trump’s for­mer per­sonal at­tor­ney has of­fered to re­scind Stormy Daniels’ hush-money agree­ment and dropped plans for its threat­ened $20 mil­lion law­suit against the porn ac­tress for al­legedly vi­o­lat­ing the deal.

An at­tor­ney for Es­sen­tial Con­sul­tants said the com­pany wants Daniels to re­pay the $130,000 she was paid as part of the nondis­clo­sure agree­ment, which was signed days be­fore the 2016 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion, ac­cord­ing to a let­ter in­cluded in a Fri­day night court fil­ing.

Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clif­ford, claims she had a sex­ual en­counter with Trump in 2006, which Trump de­nies, and was su­ing to in­val­i­date the nondis­clo­sure agree­ment.

The de­vel­op­ment could kill a plan by Daniels’ at­tor­ney, Michael Ave­natti, to try to com­pel the pres­i­dent to pro­vide tes­ti­mony un­der oath, if the agree­ment is re­scinded and a judge dis­misses the case.

Es­sen­tial Con­sul­tants was set up by Trump’s for­mer per­sonal at­tor­ney, Michael Co­hen, who pleaded guilty in fed­eral court last month to cam­paign-fi­nance vi­o­la­tions and other charges. Co­hen told the judge that he and Trump ar­ranged the pay­ment of hush money to Daniels and a for­mer Play­boy model to in­flu­ence the elec­tion.

Ave­natti said that Fri­day’s de­vel­op­ment is “a stunt by Michael Co­hen try­ing to fix it so that Don­ald Trump is not de­posed.” Ave­natti said he did not have to ac­cept the of­fer and would not set­tle the case “with­out the de­po­si­tions,” which he said would in­clude Trump.

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