Public corruption prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney's office in Manhattan are trying to determine if there was any fraud related to the payments to Karen McDougal and Stormy Daniels, according to one of the people. McDougal, a former playmate, was paid $150,000 by the parent company of the National Enquirer for her story, though the magazine never published it. Cohen paid $130,000 to Daniels as part of an agreement, made before the 2016 election, to keep her from going public with her allegations.
A warrant used in the raid Monday specifically authorized agents to seize records related to McDougal, said one of the people, who demanded anonymity to discuss the confidential details.
The payments appear to be part of a pattern of Trump' self-described fixer trying to shield the businessman-turned-politician from embarrassing press by buying women's silence.