National Enquirer CEO and Donald Trump's friend David Pecker granted federal immunity in Michael Cohen case

David Pecker met with the prosecutors to describe Cohen's as well as Trump's involvement in payoffs to women who allegedly had affairs with the president in the past


                            National Enquirer CEO and Donald Trump's friend David Pecker granted federal immunity in Michael Cohen case

The prosecutors who managed to eke a guilty plea out of President Donald Trump's longtime lawyer Michael Cohen have granted immunity to David Pecker. Pecker, who is the CEO of the company that owns the National Enquirer and is a close friend of Trump, was involved in a deal to pay off former Playboy model Karen McDougal who claimed to have slept with the president.

Cohen most recently pleaded guilty to two campaign finance violations — one of which was 'causing an unlawful corporate contribution' — relating to payments that were made to adult film star Stormy Daniels and McDougal before the 2016 Presidential elections. 

The charging documents against Cohen detail an agreement where McDougal was given a settlement of $150,000 from American Media Inc. (AMI), which happens to be the company that owns the National Enquirer and which is headed by none other than Pecker. 

Pecker (left) has been granted immunity (Source: Francois Durand/Getty Images)
Pecker (left) has been granted immunity (Source: Francois Durand/Getty Images)

While Cohen's indictment did not name either the National Enquirer or American Media Inc. in either of the deals, both were previously identified in numerous press stories and court records relating to payments made to both Daniels and McDougal.

According to the Daily Mail, this document identifies one 'Corporation-1' which was to 'advance a payment of $150,000 to Woman-1' with the promise of reimbursement, 'so as to ensure that Woman-1 did not publicize damaging allegations before the 2016 presidential election and thereby influence that election.'

Pecker, who was subpoenaed by federal investigators close to four months ago, met with the prosecutors to describe Cohen's as well as Trump's involvement in payoffs to women who allegedly had affairs with the president in the past. 

This comes after prosecutors determined that AMI advised Cohen throughout the course of Trump's presidential campaign and that Pecker helped "deal with negative stories about [Trump’s] relationships with women by, among other things, assisting the campaign in identifying such stories so they could be purchased and their publication avoided."

As Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the interference in the 2016 elections gathers steam, Trump has gotten jitterier and jitterier, resorting to repeated attacks against the team. In his most recent outburst, he bemoaned the prosecutorial tactics being deployed on 'Fox and Friends.'

"People make up stories. This whole thing about flipping, they call it, I know all about flipping. For 30, 40 years I've been watching flippers. Everything's wonderful and then they get 10 years in jail and they flip on whoever the next highest one is, or as high as you can go," he said.

He continued the rant: "It almost ought to be outlawed. It's not fair. Because if somebody's going to give — spend five years like Michael Cohen or 10 years or 15 years in jail because of a taxi cab industry, because he defrauded some bank — the last two were the tiny ones. You know, campaign violations are considered not a bit deal, frankly. But if somebody defrauded a bank and he's going to get 10 years in jail or 20 years in jail but, if you can say something bad about Donald Trump, you'll go down to two years or three years, which is the deal he made."