The New York Times reported on Tuesday (May 22) that Evgeny Freidman, a Russian immigrant and longtime business partner of Michael Cohen, pled guilty to state charges of tax evasion. He reached an agreement to cooperate with authorities at the state and federal level as he was facing criminal and larceny charges with up to 100 years in prison.

According to the New York Times and CNN, Freidman, also known as New York's 'Taxi King', was indicted last year by the New York Attorney General for evading $5,000,000 in state taxes.

He pled guilty on Tuesday to one of the four criminal counts of $50,000 in taxes he did not pay. Under the terms of the cooperation agreement, Freidman will not serve any jail time.

The Cohen-connection

Freidman and Cohen were in the taxi medallion business together in which Freidman helped managed Michael Cohen’s fleet of taxis in Chicago, reported CNN. They also worked together on deals which makes Friedman a wealth of information, considering he would be intimately familiar with Cohen’s financial business practices and how he operated.

This should be concerning to Trump’s fixer because his taxi business dealings were one of the target-seizures in the April 9 FBI raid on Cohen’s home and offices. The other person who should be concerned is the President of the United States because Cohen now finds himself in a pressure cooker.

Doing flips

According to court transcripts, the judge asked Friedman if he appreciated what his lawyer did for him, noting the seriousness of the proceedings and the gift he received.

In news commentaries, CNN legal experts asserted Freidman understood the enormous gesture just fine. Otherwise, he would not have agreed to give officials information, nor would he have gotten the gracious deal of probation.

So now that Cohen’s business partner has flipped on him, does this mean Cohen will flip on Trump? It is more likely than not. Although Trump's legal issues and the Russia investigation has nothing to do with Cohen's federal case in New York, for which he has not been charged, there is concrete evidence against Cohen for engaging in criminal activity.

And now it seems Friedman has sealed the fate of his friend Mike.

The Trump factor

Though it is purely speculative at this point, Freidman's cooperation agreement and plea may lead to state charges against Cohen. Should this happen, Trump will not be able to save his fixer because presidential pardons are reserved for the federal level.

Cohen is a father and a husband. A lot is at stake if he faces any kind of charges or prison time. Logic would dictate that since Freidman was facing up to 100 years for $5,000,000, and Cohen, who has had much more than that passed through his bank accounts, as evidenced by recent reports of his shady pay-to-play donations and tactics.

One can only wonder what kind of deal will be presented to Cohen to elicit Trump information.

Right now, it would appear that the odds of Cohen remaining loyal to the POTUS and not singing like a canary are slim to none. Self-preservation may win out, and if it does, where does that leave Trump?

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