For the first time since news of Donald Trump’s alleged affair with Stormy Daniels surfaced, the president’s longtime lawyer admitted Tuesday that there was a payment made to the porn star.
Calling it “a private transaction,” Michael D. Cohen told The New York Times that he paid Daniels $130,000 out of his own pocket in 2016.
Cohen, who worked as a counsel to the Trump Organization for more than a decade, claimed that he has not been compensated by Trump.
The revelation is the latest news in an ongoing saga that reemerged on Jan. 12, when the Wall Street Journal reported that Cohen had arranged a $130,000 payment to Daniels a month before the 2016 election so she’d keep quiet about an alleged sexual encounter that took place less than four months after Trump’s wife, now-First Lady Melania, gave birth to their son, Barron, now 11.
Cohen had initially denied that such a payment had been made. He and the White House have also denied the allegation of an affair, with a Trump official telling the Wall Street Journal last month: “These are old, recycled reports, which were published and strongly denied prior to the election.”
Here’s everything you need to know about the president’s porn star drama.
1. Stormy Daniels described having multiple sexual encounters with Trump in a shelved 2011 interview with In Touch magazine
The Jan. 19 release of the In Touch interview marked the first time Daniels herself confirmed the alleged affair.
Daniels, born Stephanie Clifford, told In Touch in 2011 that Trump asked for her number and invited her to his hotel room for dinner after meeting at a golf tournament in Lake Tahoe in July 2006.
She claimed she and Trump had “textbook generic” sex that night, and had several more sexual encounters in the months that followed.
2. Daniels has hinted that a denial released on her behalf by Cohen was not actually hers
In a statement released by Cohen on her behalf, Daniels said allegations that she had a sexual or romantic affair with Trump were “completely false.”
On Jan. 30, a second statement seemingly issued by Daniels read: “I am not denying this affair because I was paid ‘hush money’ as has been reported in overseas owned tabloids. I am denying this affair because it never happened.”
However, hours later, during an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! Daniels hinted that the denial was not hers, pointing out the differences in her signatures when host Jimmy Kimmel showed collectibles that were previously autographed by her.
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3. Daniels’ friend, adult film star Alana Evans, has also corroborated reports of the alleged relationship
During a January appearance on Megyn Kelly Today, Evans said Daniels had a sexual encounter with Trump after meeting him at a golf tournament in 2006. Evans later told PEOPLE that Daniels and Trump called her the night of their first alleged tryst, in what she believed was an attempt to invite her over for a threesome.
“I wasn’t attracted to him. It’s not like she was calling me with Brad Pitt, Mark Wahlberg. Even Will Ferrell, I would have been right there,” Evans said. “But not for Donald, it’s not going to happen.”
4. Daniels may not be the only woman with whom Trump has allegedly been unfaithful
Author Michael Wolff of the bestselling Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House last month hinted to Bill Maher that Trump is currently having an affair inside the White House. White House representatives did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
In another recent interview, Trevor Noah pressed Wolff on the current cheating allegation, which Wolff said was in his book.
“You just have to somewhat read between the lines, and then you have to see,” Wolff said. “It’s there.”
5. Daniels may soon speak about her alleged affair with Trump
On Wednesday, Daniels’ manager told The Associated Press that the porn star believes she is now free to discuss her alleged sexual relationship with Trump. Daniels says Cohen invalidated a non-disclosure agreement by telling The New York Times about his payment to her.