President Donald Trump has now been abandoned by two of his most powerful protectors, his longtime lawyer and the company that owns the National Enquirer tabloid, bringing a perilous investigation into his campaign one step closer to the Oval Office.
Both Michael Cohen and American Media Inc. now say they made hush money payments to a porn star and a Playboy Playmate for the purposes of helping his 2016 White House bid, an apparent campaign finance violation.
The women alleged affairs with Trump, and federal prosecutors say the payments were made at Trump's direction.
China on Thursday confirmed it has detained two Canadian men, raising the stakes in a three-way international dispute over the case of a Chinese telecoms executive facing possible extradition from Canada to the United States.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said entrepreneur Michael Spavor and former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig were taken into custody on Monday on suspicion of "engaging in activities that endanger the national security" of China.
Lu said Canada was informed about the detentions, but declined to say whether the men have been provided with lawyers. He said the cases are being handled separately by local bureaus of the national intelligence agency in Beijing, where Kovrig was picked up, and the northeastern city of Dandong, where Spavor had been living.
President Donald Trump has told people close to him in recent days that he is alarmed by the prospect of impeachment, as the consequences of federal investigations involving his associates and Democratic control of the House sink in, multiple sources told NBC News.
On Wednesday, federal prosecutors announced an agreement with American Media Inc, in which the publisher of the National Enquirer admitted to making a $150,000 payment in 2016 to silence a woman alleging an affair with Trump, in coordination with his presidential campaign, to prevent her story from influencing the election. That revelation came after Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen admitted that he violated campaign finance laws by arranging hush payments to women in 2016 at the direction of Trump.
“The entire question about whether the president committed an impeachable offense now hinges on the testimony of two men: David Pecker and Allen Weisselberg, both cooperating witnesses in the SDNY investigation," a close Trump ally told NBC News.
Weisselberg is the chief financial officer for Trump organization who was allegedly in the center of the hush money operation. He was reportedly granted immunity for his testimony. Pecker is the chief executive at AMI.
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AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File
The company that publishes the National Enquirer admitted that it paid $150,000 in hush money to silence alleged mistresses of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump prior to the 2016 election, prosecutors said Wednesday.
The publisher, American Media Inc., will avoid prosecution by stipulating that it worked with Trump's campaign to buy the silence of women — who have identified themselves as adult film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal — ahead of the vote two years ago, prosecutors said.
The agreement between prosecutors and AMI was signed and dated Sept. 21. A representative for AMI and the company's CEO, David Pecker, a long-time ally of Trump's, declined comment on Wednesday.
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Courtesy Mack Ladner
A Hawaii Air National Guard civilian contractor was in serious condition Wednesday after his plane crashed off the coast of Honolulu during a military exercise, authorities said.
The pilot of the Hawker Hunter jet ejected safely from the plane, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam said in a statement. He was initially rescued by a private sailboat and then transferred to the U.S. Coast Guard.
Honolulu Emergency Services spokesman Dustin Malama said the 47-year-old appeared to have traumatic injuries and was taken to a hospital.
British Prime Minister Theresa May announced she has postponed a key parliamentary vote on Britain’s Brexit deal with the E.U.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Senators are expected to vote Thursday on a resolution that would call on the U.S. to pull assistance from the Saudi-led war in Yemen, a measure that would rebuke Saudi Arabia after the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
The Senate may also consider a separate resolution condemning the journalist's killing as senators have wrestled with how to respond to the Saudi journalist's murder. U.S. intelligence officials have concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman must have at least known of the plot, but President Donald Trump has been reluctant to pin the blame.
Senators voted 60-39 on Wednesday to open debate on the Yemen resolution, signaling there is enough support to win the 50 votes needed. But it's unclear how amendments to the measure could affect the final vote, which is expected to come Thursday.
An award-winning Arizona newspaper publisher and his wife are locked in a bizarre divorce case that has morphed into something more: a journalism ethics saga.
Joseph Soldwedel has accused wife Felice Soldwedel in a lawsuit of trying to kill him by poisoning him, and detailed the allegations in one of the small-town newspapers he owns, the 13,000-circulation Prescott Daily Courier.
None of the three news stories in the paper named his wife. But the Courier ran an ad accusing her by name, with a photo of her, bordered with images of skulls and rats. The ad said she had an unnamed accomplice, and it offered a $10,000 reward for tips.
First lady Melania Trump said that the most difficult part of her time in the White House is watching "opportunists" use her family's name to advance their careers, claiming they're not recording history properly, NBC News reported.
"I would say the opportunists who are using my name or my family's names to advance themselves, from comedians to journalists, to performers, bookwriters," she said in an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity which aired Wednesday. "The problem is they are writing the history and it's not correct."
In the interview, Trump also said that sometimes she doesn't agree with her husband's tone "and I tell him that."
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Rosa Gutiérrez Lopez moved to the United States 13 years ago and had three American-born children.
She recently checked in with immigration officials and was ordered to return to her home country of El Salvador. She bought a ticket but, fearing for her safety, opted to take refuge in a church in Bethesda, Maryland.
On Monday, Lopez moved in to Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church in Bethesda, Maryland.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi all but ensured Wednesday that she will become House speaker next month, quelling a revolt by disgruntled younger Democrats by agreeing to limit her tenure to no more than four additional years in the chamber's top post.
Within moments of announcing she would restrict her time in the job, seven of her critics distributed a statement promising to back the California Democrat. Democrats widely agreed that the pledge meant Pelosi had clinched a comeback to the post she held from 2007 until January 2011, the last time her party ran the House and the first time the speaker was a woman.
As U.S. President Donald Trump re-imposed harsh economic sanctions on Iran last month, hackers scrambled to break into personal emails of American officials tasked with enforcing them, The Associated Press has found — another sign of how deeply cyberespionage is embedded into the fabric of US-Iranian relations.
The AP drew on data gathered by the London-based cybersecurity group Certfa to track how a hacking group often nicknamed Charming Kitten spent the past month trying to break into the private emails of more than a dozen U.S. Treasury officials. Also on the hackers' hit list: high-profile defenders, detractors and enforcers of the nuclear deal struck between Washington and Tehran, as well as Arab atomic scientists, Iranian civil society figures and D.C. think tank employees.
"Presumably, some of this is about figuring out what is going on with sanctions," said Frederick Kagan, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute who has written about Iranian cyberespionage and was among those targeted.
The French government spokesman says security forces are trying to catch the suspected shooter dead or alive, two days after an attack near Strasbourg's Christmas market.
Benjamin Griveaux said on CNews television that more than 700 officers are involved in the manhunt for 29-year-old Cherif Chekatt. Police have distributed a photo of the wounded fugitive.
The attack in Strasbourg killed three, left a fourth person brain dead and wounded several others.
Apple will build a $1 billion campus in Austin, Texas, break ground on smaller locations in Seattle, San Diego and Culver City, California, and over the next three years will expand in Pittsburgh, New York and Colorado.
The tech giant said Thursday that the new campus in Austin, less than a mile from existing Apple facilities, will open with 5,000 positions in engineering, research and development, operations, finance, sales and customer support. The site, according to Apple, will have the capacity to accommodate 15,000 employees.
The three other new locations will have more than 1,000 employees each.
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A high-speed train hit a railway engine and crashed into a pedestrian overpass at a station in the Turkish capital Ankara on Thursday, killing nine people and injuring 47 others, officials said.
The 6:30 a.m. (0330 GMT) train from Ankara to the central Turkish city of Konya collided head-on with the engine, which was checking the tracks at the capital's small Marsandiz station, Transport Minister Mehmet Cahit Turhan told reporters after inspecting the site. The high-speed train transits that station without stopping.
At least two cars derailed, hitting the station's overpass which then collapsed onto the train.