Michael Cohen’s public testimony has already resulted in everything from House Democrats requesting Donald Trump’s tax returns, to New York State subpoenaing Trump’s fraudulent insurance claims. It was also surreal, considering Cohen had already been convicted of lying to Congress. But the upcoming testimony from Felix Sater is set to be even more damaging to Trump, and far more surreal.
Felix Sater is a convicted Russian mafia money launderer who once went to prison for stabbing a guy in the face. So we’re already reaching a historic new low just by having to bring this guy in to testify about his business relationship with the sitting President of the United States. But while Sater isn’t anyone’s idea of an ideal witness, he’s going to be able to bust out a whole lot of ugly stuff about Donald Trump, because he once partnered with the Trump Organization on the shady Trump Soho real estate project.
The widespread suspicion is that Trump Soho was nothing more than a front for Russian money laundering. Sater knows the answer, of course. How much will he be willing to reveal during his testimony? The last time he got busted, he didn’t go to prison, and he’s since claimed that it’s because he became a government informant. The thing about that kind of arrangement is that it tends not to end.
If Felix Sater doesn’t want to go to prison for the crimes he committed with Donald Trump, he’ll have to give Trump up. Considering Sater’s history of giving up his co-conspirators, there’s reason to expect Sater will indeed sell Trump out during his public testimony on March 14th. The bigger question may be how much Sater has already given to Robert Mueller and the SDNY.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report