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WASHINGTON (CBSMiami/CNN) – President Donald Trump’s personal attorney claims he paid $130 thousand out of his own pocket to a porn actress who allegedly had a sexual relationship with Trump in 2006.

“In a private transaction in 2016, I used my own personal funds to facilitate a payment of $130,000 to Ms. Stephanie Clifford,” Michael Cohen said in a statement. “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.”

Keith Davidson, a lawyer for Clifford, said Cohen’s claim that he paid her out of his own pocket was “in complete harmony with what he informed me of at the time of the transaction.”

The New York Times was the first to report that Cohen had said he made the payment himself.

Just weeks before the 2016 election, Cohen reportedly created a private LLC to pay Clifford.

The Wall Street Journal reports the payment was made “a month before the 2016 election, as part of an agreement that precluded Daniels from publicly discussing an alleged sexual encounter with Mr. Trump” in 2006.

Following initial reports last month that Cohen had made the payment, he said in a statement that Trump “vehemently denies” any encounter between the two.

In January, the organization Common Cause filed complaints with the Federal Election Commission and the Justice Department, alleging that the reported payment to Clifford constituted a campaign finance violation. But on Tuesday, Cohen’s statement denied that accusation and said the monetary exchange was “lawful” and “not a campaign contribution.”

“The payment to Ms. Clifford was lawful, and was not a campaign contribution or a campaign expenditure by anyone,” Cohen said.

Cohen also said he filed a reply with the FEC, but that filing will not be public until the agency has resolved the matter.

When asked why he made the payment, Cohen told CNN: “Just because something isn’t true doesn’t mean that it can’t cause you harm or damage. I will always protect Mr. Trump.”

(©2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. CNN contributed to this report.)

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