Former Donald Trump lawyer Michael Cohen jailed for three years

Michael Cohen, the former lawyer to Donald Trump who once said he’d take a bullet for the president, has been given a 36-month prison sentence.

He is the first member of Mr Trump’s inner circle to be jailed over the special counsel’s inquiry into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

He has pleaded guilty to crimes including campaign finance violations, tax evasion and lying to Congress.

In a New York court on Wednesday Cohen lashed out at his former boss.

The 52-year-old told Judge William Pauley that Mr Trump caused him to “follow a path of darkness rather than light”.

He told the court his “weakness was a blind loyalty to Donald Trump” and that he “felt it was my duty to cover up his dirty deeds”.

The sentencing was related to two separate cases brought by the Southern District of New York and Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

Mr Cohen pleaded guilty to campaign finance violations for his role in making hush money payments to women who alleged affairs with Mr Trump.

Mr Trump has acknowledged the payments despite denying the affairs, and called them a private transaction unrelated to his campaign.

He will serve that term concurrently with a two-month sentence he was given for lying to Congress about a possible Trump Tower project in Moscow, a charge levelled by Special Counsel Mueller.

Carrick says Man United have eyes on top spot

Manchester United have set their sights on usurping Premier League leaders Chelsea after beating Liverpool 3-0, midfielder Michael Carrick told the club’s in-house television channel on Monday.

United were languishing in 10th place after winning only three of their opening 10 league games under new coach Louis van Gaal, but a run of six consecutive victories has seen them climb the table to third place.

Sunday’s success over Liverpool at Old Trafford took them back to within eight points of Chelsea and although Jose Mourinho’s side remain favourites for the title, Carrick believes United have a chance.

“We are always looking at how we can get to the top,” Carrick told MUTV. “All in all, we are in a pretty decent position at the moment.

“We need to stay up there, we need to stay in touch, then come Christmas and come January, as we’ve said for many years now, if we are up there challenging then we will give ourselves a great chance.”

Wayne Rooney, Juan Mata and Robin van Persie scored the goals that gave United victory over Liverpool, while goalkeeper David de Gea was named man of the match thanks to a number of impressive saves.