U.S. President Donald Trump and his personal lawyer Michael Cohen plan to ask a judge to delay the civil suit filed by adult film actress Stormy Daniels due to a criminal investigation that led FBI agents to attack the house, the office and the Cohen hotel.
Cohen says the criminal case would require Cohen to assert his Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination if he were questioned in the Daniels case, according to a filing in federal court in Los Angeles.
Daniels sued to undo a confidentiality agreement she signed in 2016 and said she intended to silence her about a sexual encounter she had with Trump a decade earlier. Cohen has said he paid Daniels $ 130,000 out of his own pocket just before the presidential election and that he was not reimbursed.
Daniels also claims that she was defamed by a statement Cohen issued in February that made her sound like a liar.
In the February 13 statement, Cohen said that "just because something is not true does not mean it can not cause harm or harm" in connection with the payment. According to Daniels, the statement damaged her reputation and exposed her to contempt, ridicule and shame.
Criminal investigations commonly lead to a suspension of civil suits because the process could generate evidence that could put the defendant in legal danger.
Daniels' lawyer, Michael Avenatti, said he would oppose the delay, but agreed to allow the president and Cohen to make the request.
The judge agreed that Trump and Cohen must present their formal request for Friday.