Cohen insists he's never done business with Taxi King

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Michael Cohen, a longtime personal attorney for Donald Trump, accepted a $400,000 payment to arrange talks between Trump and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, according to a BBC report.

Evgeny Freidman, a Russian immigrant who is known as the Taxi King, will avoid jail time and will assist government prosecutors in state or federal investigations, the newspaper report said, citing a person briefed on the matter. Anything that bolsters that inquiry could raise pressure on Mr Cohen to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller.

In addition to Cohen, two Ukrainians who the BBC's sources said opened a back channel with him on behalf of Poroshenko denied the story. Freidman's plea and cooperation were first reported by the New York Times.

That likelihood could become greater with a business partner of Mr. Cohen's cooperating with law enforcement. Last month, Federal Bureau of Investigation agents searched his home, office and hotel room.

"'I am one of thousands of medallion owners who entrust management companies to operate my medallions according to the rules of the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission, '" Cohen tweeted.

Cohen denied on Twitter Wednesday that he was partners with Freidman "in this business or any other".

Friedman, dubbed the "Taxi King", has reportedly for years managed Cohen's taxi companies in NY and Chicago.

The Ukrainian president wanted to meet with Trump to clear the air over the 2016 presidential campaign.

U.S. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen arrives at his hotel in New York City, U.S., May 11, 2018.

The value of a taxi medallion reached a high of $1.2 million each in 2014, but their value has slumped to about $300,000 amid the rise of ride-hailing services such as Uber. "As medallion values continue to drop, Council Member Rodriguez takes steps to stymie further decline", his press aide announced in a statement at the time. He declared bankruptcy on some of his medallions in 2016 and a year ago was charged by the NY state attorney general with theft. "This is a very hard day for myself and my family", Freidman said to New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman, who read the statement out loud on CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360". Instead, he filed false tax returns created to hide the theft, they said.

Freidman got five years of probation for pleading guilty Tuesday to a single count of evading $50,000 worth of taxes.

"The Trump regime responded through its skeletal mouthpiece, Rudy Giuliani: "[Trump's] just not involved in the taxis". "Our office will continue to hold accountable those who cheat the system".

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