Avenatti Expects To Be ‘Fully Exonerated’

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LOS ANGELES — The Latest on the arrest of attorney Michael Avenatti (all times local):

5:35 p.m.

Celebrity attorney Michael Avenatti says he is confident he will be “fully exonerated” of federal extortion and bank and wire fraud charges.

He told reporters late Monday he will “never stop fighting the good fight” against powerful people and corporations.

Avenatti spoke after appearing in federal court on extortion charges. He was released on $300,000 bond.

Avenatti was arrested earlier Monday after federal authorities accused him of trying to extort millions of dollars from Nike. He allegedly threatened to hold a news conference and release damaging allegations against the company if Nike didn’t pay him up to $25 million.

Avenatti also faces federal bank and wire fraud charges in Los Angeles. He’s accused of embezzling a client’s money to pay his own expenses and making false representations to a bank.

4:20 p.m.

A federal magistrate judge in New York has ordered Michael Avenatti released on $300,000 bond in cases alleging that he embezzled money from a client and tried to extort millions of dollars from Nike.

Avenatti appeared in court Monday evening wearing a gray suit and blue tie.

He was arrested earlier at a law firm where he’d gone to meet with Nike executives.

Michael Avenatti, the attorney best known for representing porn actress Stormy Daniels in lawsuits against President Donald Trump, was arrested in New York Monday on charges he tried to extort millions of dollars from Nike. (March 25)

Avenatti is best known for representing porn actress Stormy Daniels.

He is charged in New York with shaking down Nike for $25 million by threatening the company with bad publicity over alleged misconduct involving an amateur basketball team.

In a separate case in Los Angeles, Avenatti is charged with bank fraud and wire fraud.

Avenatti didn’t enter a plea at the hearing.

3:10 p.m.

CNN has cut ties with Mark Geragos just hours after the celebrity attorney was named as a co-conspirator in a case accusing lawyer Michael Avenatti of trying to extort Nike.

A CNN representative confirmed Monday that Geragos is no longer a contributor to the network but didn’t specify why. His name is no longer listed on CNN’s website as a legal analyst.

Geragos appeared on CNN this month to discuss the case against his client Jussie Smollett, an actor accused of fabricating a racist, anti-gay attack in Chicago.

A person familiar with details of the Avenatti investigation tells The Associated Press that a co-conspirator was Geragos.

The Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer didn’t respond to messages seeking comment.

Mar 25. 2019 - 5:46 PM PST


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