Meet Stormy Daniels, the porn star Michael Cohen says Trump told him to pay $130,000 to cover up an alleged sexual affair

Meet Stormy Daniels, the porn star Michael Cohen says Trump told him to pay 0,000 to cover up an alleged sexual affair
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stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels.

  • Porn star Stormy Daniels said she had an affair with Donald Trump in 2006, which Trump has denied.
  • She’s at the center of Donald Trump’s trial in New York related to a $130,000 hush-money payment.
  • During her testimony Tuesday, Daniels said she was scared and ashamed after having sex with Trump.
Porn star Stormy Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, is at the heart of the years-long investigation into former President Donald Trump’s finances — a probe that led to the unprecedented indictment of Trump earlier this year.
dult film actress/director Stormy Daniels attends a signing for her book "Full Disclosure" at the 2019 AVN Adult Entertainment Expo at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on January 26, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Adult film actress/director Stormy Daniels attends a signing for her book “Full Disclosure” at the 2019 AVN Adult Entertainment Expo at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on January 26, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Porn star and director Stormy Daniels says she met President Donald Trump at a celebrity golf tournament in Lake Tahoe in July 2006, and the two allegedly began an affair. He was married to Melania Trump at the time, who had just given birth to their son Barron.

Just weeks before the 2016 presidential election, Trump’s longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen paid $130,000 so Daniels would keep silent about the alleged affair, which Trump has denied.

In January 2018, news of the hush money broke, and Daniels was thrust into the national spotlight.

Nearly five years after the Manhattan district attorney’s office was reported to be eyeing criminal charges related to the hush-money payment, a Manhattan grand jury voted to indict Trump last month at the conclusion of an investigation into the former president’s finances.

The former president surrendered himself on Tuesday where he was booked and arraigned on 34 felony charges. 

Here’s what you should know about Stormy Daniels:

Daniels was born and raised in Louisiana.
stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels attends a signing for Comedian Dane Cook’s new CD/DVD ‘Retaliation’ at Tower Records on July 27, 2005 in Hollywood California.

She started stripping as a teenager and soon entered the porn business.
stormy daniels
Adult film actress Stormy Daniels presents a creation by Junker Designs during a fashion show debuting the company’s new collection at the Rainbow Bar & Grill as part of the MAGIC convention August 28, 2006 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

In 2002, she became the lead actress in a film for Wicked Pictures, a porn movie studio based in California.
stormy daniels
Daniels and comedian Emcee Pete Giovine greet fans in Las Vegas.

She has won numerous awards for her roles as both a performer and a director in adult scenes and films.
stormy daniels
Daniels and musician Dave Navarropose on the press line at the premiere of “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” in Los Angeles on April 10, 2008.

She has also had minor roles in more mainstream movies, including “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” “Knocked Up,” and “Finding Bliss.” She appeared in the Maroon 5 music video “Wake Up Call” in 2007.
stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels arrives for the 49th Annual Grammy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 11, 2007, in Los Angeles.

Sources: The Daily BeastYouTube

She’s been married four times.
stormy daniels and mike moz
Daniels with her former husband and actor, Mike Moz.

Her current husband is fellow adult film actor Barrett Blade.
Adult film actress/director Stormy Daniels (L) is kissed by adult film actor/director Barrett Blade as they attend the 2023 Adult Video News Awards at Resorts World Las Vegas on January 07, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Adult film actress/director Stormy Daniels (L) is kissed by adult film actor/director Barrett Blade as they attend the 2023 Adult Video News Awards at Resorts World Las Vegas on January 07, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Source: Daniels’ Instagram

Before her marriage to Blade and ex-husband Brendan Miller, Daniels stirred a bit of controversy after it was revealed that she was having a baby girl with her former boyfriend.
stormy daniels
Daniels with comedian Dane Cook.

In a 2012 interview, she addressed those who thought she was not fit to be a mother: “It’s just all the negativity towards the adult industry in general, or people’s fear,” she said.
stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels arrives at the 50th annual Grammy awards held at the Staples Center on February 10, 2008 in Los Angeles, California.

In 2009, she considered entering politics and challenging Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana, who had been accused of engaging with a prostitute, for his seat. She told a reporter at the time that while she doesn’t think she’s the best person for the job, “I just think I’m a better choice than the senator they already have.”
stormy daniels
Adult film star Stormy Daniels, left, signs autographs at the AVN Adult Entertainment Expo in Las Vegas, Sunday, Jan. 11, 2009.

That same year, she was arrested for a domestic violence misdemeanor following a dispute with her then-husband.
stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels visits a local restaurant in downtown New Orleans, Wednesday, May 6, 2009.

She ultimately decided to not run for the Senate.
stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels visits a local restaurant in downtown New Orleans, Wednesday, May 6, 2009.

But in January 2018, she reemerged on the political scene, although perhaps not the way she had planned. The Wall Street Journal reported that she was paid more than $100,000 in hush money over an alleged sexual encounter with President Donald Trump over a decade ago.
stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels visits a local restaurant in downtown New Orleans, Wednesday, May 6, 2009.

Source: WSJ

In an interview on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” after Trump’s 2018 State of the Union speech, Daniels refused to answer questions about the payment. Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, initially denied the existence of any payment.
stormy daniels on kimmel
In February 2018, Cohen admitted that he personally paid Daniels the money.
Michael Cohen
Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, arrives in Trump Tower in New York City.

“Neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Ms. Clifford, and neither reimbursed me for the payment, either directly or indirectly,” Cohen said. “The payment to Ms. Clifford was lawful, and was not a campaign contribution or a campaign expenditure by anyone.”
President Donald Trump and Melania Trump
President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump.

In response, Daniels’ manager said Cohen’s admission invalidates a non-disclosure agreement her client signed that forbid her from speaking publicly about the money. The manager said things have changed. “Everything is off now, and Stormy is going to tell her story.”
stormy daniels
Adult film star Stormy Daniels arrives at the 50th Grammy Awards in Los Angeles February 10, 2008.

Then on March 6, 2018, Daniels sued Trump, arguing that he never signed his portion of the agreement. The lawsuit also said “attempts to intimidate Ms. Clifford into silence and ‘shut her up’ in order to ‘protect Mr. Trump’ continue unabated.”
stormy daniels
Adult film actress Stormy Daniels arrives at the 24th annual Adult Video News Awards Show at the Mandalay Bay Events Center January 13, 2007 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Daniels began to tell her side of the story about her and Trump’s alleged 2006 affair in a “60 Minutes” interview that aired on March 25, 2018.
stormy daniels
Adult film actress and director Stormy Daniels hosts a Super Bowl party at Sapphire Las Vegas Gentlemen’s Club in Las Vegas, Nevada on February 4, 2018.

She told Anderson Cooper a man threatened to keep quiet about her relationship with Trump in a Las Vegas parking lot in 2011. Daniels also wouldn’t rule out that there may be photos or videos proving she had an affair with Trump.
stormy daniels cbs 60 minutes
Daniels appears on “60 Minutes.”

In April, 2018, Trump publicly acknowledged the $130,000 payment to Daniels for the first time by denying he knew about the payment or where the money came from.
President Donald Trump
President Donald Trump answers a reporter’s question as eight different phones and recording devices placed on his desk by reporters and White House staff members record his words in the Oval Office of the White House.

The FBI seized records of the $130,000 payment to Daniels and recordings of phone calls between Cohen and Daniels’ lawyer during a raid on Cohen’s office and home in April 2018.
Michael Cohen
Michael Cohen.

Source: Business Insider

Also in that month, Daniels released a sketch of the man she says threatened her in a Las Vegas parking lot to stay quiet about her affair with Trump in 2011.
The Stormy Daniels sketch
A sketch of the man Stormy Daniels says threatened her in a parking lot in 2011.

Outside of a Manhattan courthouse, Daniels said Cohen “acted like he is above the law” and “played by a different set of rules.” “That ends now,” Daniels said.
stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels, accompanied by her attorney, Michael Avenatti, talks to the media as she leaves federal court on April 16, 2018 in New York.

In a stunning admission, Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani said the president was aware of the $130,000 payment to Daniels at the time and reimbursed Cohen in installments over several months as part of Cohen’s salary.
Rudy Giuliani
Rudy Giuliani.

Trump responded to Giuliani’s comments by saying that the payment was legal and that his lawyer would “get his facts straight” on the Daniels case.
Trump rally ohio Danny O'Connor
President Donald Trump speaks at a rally to show support for Ohio Republican congressional candidate Troy Balderson on August 4, 2018 in Lewis Center, Ohio. Balderson faces Democratic challenger Danny O’Connor for Ohio’s 12th Congressional District on Tuesday.

Source: Business Insider

In a highly criticized statement, Giuliani took aim at Daniels’ credibility: “If you’re a feminist and you support the porn industry, you should turn in your credentials. I respect women—beautiful women and women with value — but a woman who sells her body for sexual exploitation I don’t respect.”
Rudy Giuliani Meet the Press
Rudy Giuliani.

Avenatti responded by calling for Giuliani to be fired and dubbing Trump’s lawyer a “misogynist” and “absolute pig.”
Michael Avenatti
Michael Avenatti.

In July 2018, Daniels was arrested in Columbus, Ohio for allowing a customer to touch her while performing at a strip club.
Stormy Daniels
Stormy Daniels’ mug shot.

Source: Business Insider

Avenatti described the arrest as a “setup” that he says was “politically motivated.” The prosecutors later dropped all three misdemeanor charges against her.
stormy daniels
Stormy Daniels arrives at federal court on April 16, 2018, in New York.

Source: Business Insider

On July 23, 2018, Daniels’ then-husband, Glendon Crain, AKA Brendon Miller, filed for divorce.
Stormy daniels face
Stormy Daniels

On August 21, 2018, Cohen struck a deal with prosecutors to plead guilty to eight federal crimes, including one count of making an illegal campaign finance contribution.
Michael Cohen
Michael Cohen.

Cohen made the illegal campaign contribution on October 27, 2016 — the same day a $130,000 payment to Daniels was finalized.
Stormy Daniels
Stormy Daniels.

Cohen said in his guilty plea that Trump directed him to make the illegal campaign contribution to Daniels in order to influence the election. Trump has called Cohen a liar, and accused him of making up the story to get a plea deal.
Donald Trump
President Donald Trump speaks to the media after he steps off Air Force One, Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018, in Charleston, W.Va.

Daniels celebrated the news by tweeting: “How ya like me now?! #teamstormy.”
stormy daniels
Adult film actress/director Stormy Daniels attends the 2018 Adult Video News Awards at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on January 27, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

When Fox News’ Ainsley Earhardt asked whether he knew about Cohen’s payments to Daniels and the former Playboy model Karen McDougal, Trump said he knew “later on.” “They didn’t come out of the campaign — they came from me,” Trump said.
trump fox news ainsley Earhardt fox & friends
President Donald Trump appears on “Fox & Friends” with host Ainsley Earhardt.

In a statement to NBC News, Daniels said: “Michael and I are vindicated and we look forward to the apologies from the people who claimed we were wrong.”
Stormy Daniels and Michael Avenatti
Stormy Daniels and Michael Avenatti.

But in June 2022, Avenatti was sentenced to four years in prison after a judge convicted the lawyer of embezzling nearly $300,000 from Daniels.
mike avenatti stormy daniels
Adult film actress Stormy Daniels, real name Stephanie Clifford, speaks to media with lawyer Michael Avenatti outside federal court in Manhattan on April 16, 2018.

On March 15, 2023, Daniels made a surprise appearance at the Manhattan DA’s office. The meeting came as prosecutors approached the final stages of a years-long investigation into the hush-money payment and Trump’s alleged role in facilitating it.
Stormy Daniels
Stormy Daniels at an adult entertainment fair in Berlin on October 18, 2018.

In late March 2023, Trump was indicted by a Manhattan grand jury after a five-year investigation into his finances, with charges stemming from the $130,000 payment to Daniels.
Trump, NATO
Donald Trump speaks during his meeting with Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg at Winfield House, London on December 3, 2019.

Daniels called the unprecedented indictment “poetic” but “bittersweet,” saying “Trump is no longer untouchable.
stormy daniels stephanie clifford
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – MAY 11: Stormy Daniels attends the Los Angeles Premiere Of Neon’s “Pleasure” at Linwood Dunn Theater on May 11, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.

Source: The Times

The former president surrendered himself to the Manhattan district attorney’s office on April 4, 2023, where he was booked and arraigned on the historic indictment, pleading not guilty to 34 felony charges.
Donald Trump
Former U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he arrives at the Manhattan Criminal Court on April 4, 2023.

The hush-money trial kicked off April 15, 2024, and Daniel took the stand on Tuesday.
Judge Juan Merchan presides over proceedings as Stormy Daniels, far right, answers questions on direct examination by assistant district attorney Susan Hoffinger in Manhattan criminal court as former President Donald Trump and defense attorney Todd Blanche look on, Tuesday, May 7, 2024, in New York.
A courtroom sketch of Stormy Daniels being questioned by assistant district attorney Susan Hoffinger as former President Donald Trump looks on.

Daniels’ testimony included new details about when she says she met Trump at a golf tournament in Lake Tahoe in 2006. She said she went to his hotel suite that night after accepting a dinner invitation.

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Daniels testified that she and Trump had sex and that afterward, she felt scared and ashamed.

She said she and Trump kept in touch afterward and even met in person occasionally, though she said they did not have sex again.

In her cross-examination of Daniels, Trump’s lawyer, Susan Necheles, said, “Am I correct that you hate President Trump?”

“Correct,” Daniels said.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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