U.S. prosecutors from New York and California have charged President Donald Trump-critic and attorney Michael Avenatti with extortion and bank and wire fraud. A spokesman for the U.S. attorney in Los Angeles said Avenatti was arrested Monday in New York.
Avenatti — best known for representing adult film star Stormy Daniels in lawsuits against the President — faces federal charges in New York and California. In the New York case, he was accused of threatening to use his ability to get publicity to harm the sports apparel giant Nike. In the California case, Avenatti was accused of embezzling a client’s money to pay his own expenses and debts — as well as those of his coffee business and law firm. The U.S. attorney’s office also said he defrauded a bank by using phony tax returns to obtain millions of dollars in loans.
In the New York case, the charges carry a potential penalty of 47 years in prison.
Avenatti represented Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, in a lawsuit to break a confidentiality agreement to speak about her alleged affair with President Trump.
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