The pornographic actor Stormy Daniels has filed a lawsuit against Donald Trump, claiming that his longtime personal lawyer took “considerable steps” … “in the last week” to silence her as she prepared to tell her story of an “intimate relationship” with Trump in 2006 and 2007.
The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles by Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, alleges that Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen last week tried “to silence Ms Clifford through the use of an improper and procedurally defective arbitration proceeding hidden from public view”.
The lawsuit represented the first time that Clifford has publicly claimed she had an “intimate relationship” with Trump following the revelation last October that Cohen had wired her $130,000 before the 2016 presidential election.
The lawsuit seeks a court order that would void an alleged non-disclosure agreement between Trump and Clifford. The suit claims Trump never signed the agreement “so he could later, if need be, publicly disavow any knowledge of the Hush Agreement and Ms Clifford”.
Cohen said last month that he had made the payment to Clifford, who was in talks to go on network news before the 2016 presidential election to tell her story.
In her filing Tuesday, Clifford says she “began an intimate relationship with Mr Trump in 2006 in Lake Tahoe and continued her relationship with Mr Trump well into the year 2007”.
The White House has previously declined comment on the matter, calling it settled. A former Playboy model told the New Yorker last month that she regretted signing away rights to her story of a nine-month relationship with Trump for $150,000 in August 2016.
The payment to Clifford was reported before the election, but it was not until January 2018 that a celebrity magazine released the transcript of a previously unpublished 2011 interview in which Clifford described an encounter with Trump.
“I can describe his junk perfectly,” she said of the future president. In the interview she described meeting Trump at a celebrity golf tournament in California in 2006, a year after he married Melania Trump. She said that Trump had promised to put her on his TV show Celebrity Apprentice and that he was riveted by Shark Week.
Following Cohen’s disclosure of the payment, a manager for Clifford said she planned to tell her story decisively, suggesting that Cohen’s disclosure had voided the alleged non-disclosure agreement.
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