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National Enquirer publisher flips, admits to paying hush money to protect Trump before election

This sure doesn't sound good

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

American Media Inc. — the company responsible for publishing the National Enquirer — has admitted to paying hush money to silence alleged mistresses of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump, according to a report Wednesday by NBC News.

On Wednesday, former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison for lying to investigators about the purported operation between the company and Trump's campaign, as well as financial crimes and lying to Congress.

What are the details?

American Media Inc. admitted that it paid $150,000 in such monies to protect Trump from fallout prior to the 2016 election, prosecutors said.

In short, the company admitted to paying money for exclusive rights to a story, and then sitting on the story so that it could not be published.

Prosecutors also reportedly added that the company will avoid prosecution by spelling out that it specifically worked with Trump's campaign to pay the alleged mistresses off.

Two of the higher profile mistresses include porn star Stormy Daniels (real name Stephanie Clifford) and former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

A statement from the U.S. Attorney's Office in New York read:

As a part of the agreement, AMI admitted that it made the $150,000 payment in concert with a candidate's presidential campaign, and in order to ensure that the woman did not publicize damaging allegations about the candidate.

AMI further admitted that its principal purpose in making the payment was to suppress the woman's story so as to prevent it from influencing the election.

What else?

The statement also added that the U.S. Attorney's Office has agreed not to prosecute American Media Inc. so long as the company continues to cooperate with the related investigation.

"This agreement also acknowledges, among other things, AMI's acceptance of responsibility, its substantial and important assistance in this investigation, and its agreement to provide cooperation in the future and implement specific improvements to its internal compliance to prevent future violation of the federal campaign finance laws," the statement added.

The company previously denied that it had engaged in such practices.

One last thing…
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