Hold on to something very firm and stable, maybe bolted to the ground? Because you are about to FALL DOWN ON YOUR BOTTOM with all the SHOCK and WHAAAAAT????? of what is about to come out of our keyboard next! You guys, Michael Cohen, the president’s personal attorney — the one who is doing pro-Russia “peace plans” for Russia and Ukraine, and who owns a Ukrainian ethanol company (yes, and that’s really weird!), and who does threats to reporters and is a lawyer who thinks by law, definitionally, you cannot rape your wife — yes, that Michael Cohen, they are all one and the same very excellent lawyer and very excellent guy — weelllll, it seems he may have had a little gambling business, and it never paid anybody and it went bankrupt, and every one of his partners in this gambling scheme seems to have been partnered with mobsters (of both the Russian and regular varieties) at the time, and you will be delighted to know that when Buzzfeed asked him about it he was all like SAYS WHO.
Possibly inspired by his boss, Donald Trump, who in 2003 was on his way to declaring bankruptcy with his Atlantic City casinos AGAIN, Michael Cohen joined forces with some nice fellas on a gamblers’ cruise ship with prime rib (yummm) and cocktails (yay!) and dance floors (get down!) and a bunch of employees who got stiffed for all their paychecks (OH WELL).
Cohen’s partners in the gamblers’ yacht, which one day just vanished out of the marina, were people with names like “Arkady” and “Leonid,” and those partners had other partners who were from places like “Brighton Beach” and “this ‘Russian enclave’ in a Florida Trump Tower condo,” but only one of them went to prison for mob-run tax evasion schemes. And only a different one had a business that was arsoned. And only a third one was partners in multiple businesses with Meyer Lansky, that nice retiring accountant man. So all totally normal, nothing to see here, certainly nothing like this!
Here’s some nice folks Cohen’s partners were partnering with, on other casinos, at the same time:
[Tatiana] Varzar owns Tatiana, a Russian nightclub in Brooklyn, and her husband, Michael, was sent to prison for a mob-run tax scheme in the 1990s. Federal prosecutors accused him and three other men of evading about $34 million in gasoline excise taxes and paying “tributes” to the Colombo, Gambino, Luchese, and Genovese crime families. Varzar pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 52 months in prison. His wife now runs cafés and businesses — one of which was burned down after a suspected arson in 2003 — and later opened a catering business in a Trump condo tower. That venture was running in the mid-2000s, with Varzar hired to do on-site parties and events at the building, which is in Sunny Isles, Florida, an enclave of Russian immigrants where [Cohen partner] Tatarchuk once lived.
But that’s all guilt by association! What about guilt by guilt? Cohen and his partners certainly lost several million dollars very quickly, according to Buzzfeed, which says within months of starting their marvelous bigly yooge offshore gambling yacht, they’d stopped paying their bills. But maybe that does not mean they are terrible at business. Perhaps they meant to “lose” that money. I don’t really understand how money laundering works, but I suppose it’s possible they were doing that, and none of these people was shockingly, disconcertingly stupid at all?
But here is our favorite part of the Buzzfeed story, which you will of course go read at once! Are you ready for it? Here it is:
In an interview this week, Michael Cohen at first said that he did not have a stake in the casino business, only the yacht, and bore no responsibility for lost wages and unpaid debts. But BuzzFeed News then sent him documents with his signature showing he owned 30% of the company.
“I disagree and, if I did, I never knew it,” he said.
This man is the personal attorney to the president of the United States, as well as executive vice president of his business octopus, the Trump Organization.
By his own admission, he either cannot read a contract, or he is lying.
- Partners doing business with the mob?
- Run from Trump Tower?
- Stiffing your employees?
- Not paying your bills?
- Stiffing your court judgments?
- Being so fucking bad at business you lose money on CASINOS?
- Unless that’s what you meant to do, just sayin’, wink wink?
- Denying you’re responsible or that you even own something at all?
- DENY DENY DENY DENY?
Oh, Michael Cohen, you dumb dick.