Michael Avenatti has been charged with extorting his former client out of thousands.
On Wednesday, a federal grand jury indicted the celebrity attorney for two alleged crimes, including fraud and aggravated identity theft, which involved his former client adult film star Stormy Daniels. The other charge was for attempting to extort #Nike out of $20 million. CNN reports prosecutors charged Avenatti with stealing around $300,000 of Daniels’ advance money for her book contract, according to court documents.
As of today, Avenatti has failed to pay Daniels about half of the money he allegedly stole from her. In just six weeks, the attorney has faced federal indictment three times over. However, Avenatti told CNN he will be “fully exonerated.” “I look forward to a jury hearing all of the evidence and passing judgment on my conduct. At no time was any money misappropriated or mishandled. I will be fully exonerated once the relevant emails, contracts, text messages, and documents are presented,” he said.
Avenatti took to Twitter the day before to announce his impending indictment on Twitter. “I intend on fighting these bogus/legally baseless allegations, and will plead not guilty to ALL CHARGES,” tweeted Avenatti. Today, he claims the allegations are not true. “No monies relating to Ms. Daniels were ever misappropriated or mishandled,” Avenatti said. “She received millions of dollars’ worth of legal services, and we spent huge sums in expenses. She directly paid only $100.00 for all that she received. I look forward to a jury hearing the evidence.”
Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, initially hired Avenatti to represent her in a lawsuit she filed last year to argue the nondisclosure agreement she’d signed with #DonaldTrump’s then-lawyer $MichaelCohen in exchange for $130,000 was invalid.