Federal investigators reportedly monitored Trump lawyer Michael Cohen's phone calls

Yana Paskova/Getty ImagesMichael Cohen.
  • Federal investigators have kept records of Trump lawyer Michael Cohen’s phone calls, three senior officials told NBC News on Thursday.
  • Initially, NBC News reported federal investigators wiretapped Cohen’s phones, but that story was ultimately retracted.
  • President Donald Trump has sought to distance himself from Cohen since his offices, hotel room and home were raided in early April.

Federal investigators have kept records of Trump lawyer Michael Cohen’s phone calls, three senior officials told NBC News on Thursday.

Initially, NBC News reported federal investigators wiretapped Cohen’s phones, but that story was ultimately retracted and corrected to say investigators established what is known as a pen register.

A pen register is a log of calls made from a specific phone or phone lines and doesn’t constitute a wiretap, which would allow investigators to listen in on calls.

President Donald Trump has sought to distance himself from Cohen since his offices, hotel room and home were raided in early April.

Investigators who raided Cohen’s properties were said to be seeking records about a $US130,000 payment he made shortly before the 2016 election to the porn star Stormy Daniels to ensure her silence about an alleged affair she says she had with Trump years ago.

On Wednesday, Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani told Fox News that the president reimbursed Cohen for the payment, appearing to contradict the president’s earlier statements that he knew nothing about it.

Some have speculated about whether the payment violated campaign finance laws.

On Thursday morning, Trump said on Twitter that the payment unrelated to his 2016 campaign.

“Money from the campaign, or campaign contributions, played no roll in this transaction,” Trump said.

Trump and the White House have maintained that the president did not have an affair with Daniels.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to reflect that federal investigators kept logs of Michael Cohen’s phone calls, creating a record of numbers dialed from phones in Cohen’s possession. Cohen’s phones were not wiretapped, as NBC News first reported.

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