Before yesterday Ronan Farrow was already famous and had already done some earth-shaking investigative journalism. But his story that was published in the New Yorker explaining how Michael Avenatti obtained the leaked Cohen financial records will take him to the next level of fame and journalistic renown.
When your mother is actress Mia Farrow and your father is Woody Allen (or possibly Frank Sinatra) it’s hard not to be famous. But to his credit Ronan has not rested on his laurels. It was his hard work that uncovered the Harvey Weinstein story, and for this accomplishment he has earned great respect.
In his newest story Farrow has reported that the person who took credit for leaking Michael Cohen’s information to Avenatti is a “law enforcement official” who leaked the information because he had discovered that other similar documents disclosing Cohen’s financial transactions had “gone missing.”
This unnamed source (who may lose his job) told Farrow that they could not find suspicious activity reports (SARs) pertaining to Cohen’s financial actions in a government database, but the SARs had previously been in the database and now could not be found. Only one of the three SARs could be found so he decided he had to release the one SAR because he was worried that the documents had been illegally removed from the database in order to keep them out of the hands of law enforcement officials involved in the Cohen and Trump investigations.
Farrow was the first person the source had spoken to since giving the information to Avenatti. He said the files were missing from the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.
“I have never seen something pulled off the system,” the law enforcement official said. “That system is a safeguard for the bank. It’s a stockpile of information. When something’s not there that should be, I immediately became concerned.”
“That’s why I came forward,” the official added.
Farrow was interviewed at length by Rachel Maddow last night, and they both agreed that the missing files was a cause of great concern and was in fact “terrifying.”
“It is theoretically possible that the missing Cohen reports have been sectioned off somehow by law enforcement, but according to everyone we’ve asked, it’s totally unheard of. Here’s tonight’s full interview with Ronan Farrow: https://on.msnbc.com/2InvDTd “
It is theoretically possible that the missing Cohen reports have been sectioned off somehow by law enforcement, but according to everyone we've asked, it's totally unheard of.
— Maddow Blog (@MaddowBlog) May 17, 2018
Now we have to think about what this means and why Avenatti has been so firm in his advocacy in this case. We may in fact have employees of the U.S. government destroying evidence that the FBI and the Department of Justice need in order to bring criminal cases against Michael Cohen and Donald Trump. This takes the constitutional crisis to an entirely new level.
Here is another interview with Farrow this morning on ABC.
Michael Cohen's money trail mystery – a new report shows some of the attorney's financial records are missing. @RonanFarrow joins @TomLlamasABC and @GStephanopoulos in Times Square… pic.twitter.com/WlVu3dFGwG
— Good Morning America (@GMA) May 17, 2018
Now more than ever before we need independent journalism. Our freedoms and our democracy depend on it.
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.