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Michael Cohen’s clients busted for staging accidents in scams ruled by Russian mob: report

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Attorney Michael Cohen helped clients who allegedly ripped off insurance companies with staged and deliberate auto crashes, although he’s never been accused of wrongdoing in the schemes.

President Donald Trump’s longtime attorney practiced personal injury law before joining the Trump Organization, and Rolling Stone found that some of his clients were involved with insurance fraud rings that repeatedly staged vehicle “accidents” to exploit New York’s “no-fault” insurance law.

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The law required insurers to pay up to $50,000 to victims of an auto accident, and Cohen’s first job out of law school was with Melvyn J. Estrin — who pleaded guilty to second-degree bribery in an insurance fraud scheme shortly after Cohen left his firm.

Cohen was never charged with any wrongdoing in any of the cases examined by Rolling Stone, and there’s no evidence he knowingly filed false claims — and it’s unclear whether the FBI seized any evidence related to his personal injury work during a raid last month.

But at least one of Cohen’s clients was indicted on insurance fraud while their lawsuit was pending, and he also did legal work for a medical clinic whose lead doctor later was convicted of insurance fraud related to staged auto wrecks.

“Taken together, a picture emerges that the personal attorney to the president of the United States was connected to a shadowy underworld of New York insurance fraud, a pervasive problem dominated by Russian organized crime that was costing the state’s drivers an estimated $1 billion a year,” the magazine reported.

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Auto insurers brought Cohen into court nearly 100 times between 1998 and 2003 seeking to halt claims he filed for a variety of reasons — including fraud.

One of his clients, a Haitian immigrant named Marie Pierre was sued by State Farm in 2001, after investigators determined she was involved in a fraud ring that used stolen identities.

“Her account of the accident is [so] completely contradicted by the police report that it must be questioned whether she was present at the event,” the insurers lawyers wrote.

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State Farm sued four other Cohen clients accused of staging at least 10 wrecks in 2000 and 2001, and the insurer was granted a default judgment after they declined to contest the charges.

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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Holocaust survivor’s son rips Netanyahu ‘shill’ Trump: ‘Opposing Israel’s right-wing government isn’t anti-semitic — you are’

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Hey Donald Trump, apparently you want to mix it up with me, son of a Holocaust survivor because I don’t agree that Israel—another sovereign nation—should be able to act as an oppressive occupier of Arab-owned land.

I’m not impressed with your offensive but limp, stupid statements about “Jewish Democrats” all because you think it plays well with your re-election campaign. You want a piece of me, bring it. You have done enough to piss me off.

Even given an extra day of reporter questions to suggest that you had missteps in accusing Jewish Democrats who don’t back the kowtowing policies of right-leaning Benjamin Netanyahu to remain as Israeli prime minister, you doubled down.

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A corporate land and water grab is happening in Utah — and the Trump administration isn’t doing anything to stop it

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Citadel Ruins at Bears Ears

A company wants to mine sand in southern Utah about 10 miles from Zion National Park to use for fracking and has signed contracts to buy more than 391 million gallons of water a year from a nearby city and a water district.

Environmental groups and an animal sanctuary are trying to block improvements to an 0.81-mile unpaved Utah county road in Kane County about 10 miles northwest of Kanab, Utah, on federal land that the business, Southern Red Sands LLC, would need to operate. The Bureau of Land Management is considering the request.

The Center for Biological Diversity and the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance said the project “will likely have significant, negative environmental impacts.” An endangered snail found only in the Grand Canyon and in small ponds near the proposed mine could be harmed.

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Trump is either descending into madness — or intentionally undermining American national security

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Whenever Donald Trump says or tweets a remark that embarrasses our country before the world, conventional analysis suggests that it is yet another consequence of his infantile narcissism. So we were told again when the president of the United States insulted Denmark, one of the founding nations of NATO and a dedicated American ally, by canceling his scheduled trip to meet with the Danish prime minister -- supposedly because she had deemed his scheme to buy Greenland "absurd," which, of course, it is.

He originally requested to visit Denmark, which made his abrupt, petulant cancelation all the more insulting to the Danes. The usual anonymous sources explained that he had other reasons to break the date, such as his aversion to flying overseas and his aversion to Barack Obama, who is also scheduled to visit Denmark next month.

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