Avenati will be convicted of Stormy Daniels fraud

NEW YORK (AP) – Michael Avenati will be convicted on Thursday for cheating on client Stormy Daniels, a porn actor who catapulted …

NEW YORK (AP) – Michael Avenati will be convicted on Thursday for cheating on client Stormy Daniels, the porn actor who brought him fame, hundreds of thousands of dollars in book revenue.

The California lawyer, who is currently in custody, is expected to find out about his fate in a federal court in Manhattan, where he was ordered to appear in person, not remotely.

In court earlier this year, Avenati represented himself, questioning his former client for several hours about their experience in early 2018, when she signed a book deal that involved a payment of $ 800,000. Prosecutors said he had illegally pocketed about $ 300,000 of her advance on “Full Disclosure,” published in the fall of 2018.

The publication of the book took place at a time when Avenati’s legal practice was failing financially, even though he regularly appeared on cable TV news channels.

In his speeches, he attacked then-President Donald Trump, who represented Daniels in lawsuits aimed at exempting her from the $ 130,000 payment she received shortly before the 2016 presidential election, to remain silent about a meeting she said she had with Trump ten years ago. Trump denied it.

His conviction for theft of personal data in aggravating circumstances requires a mandatory sentence of up to two years in prison. He is already serving 2 and a half years in prison for attempting to extort Nike. And he faces a retrial in California on charges that he cheated customers and others on millions of dollars.

Avenati’s lawyers claim that he does not face an additional term in prison for a conviction for fraud in the Daniels case. It is said that any punishment should take place simultaneously with the verdict in the Nike case. Avenati was found guilty of threatening to ruin the shoemaker’s reputation if he did not pay him up to $ 25 million.

Lawyers refer to a letter of apology he recently wrote to Daniels, in which he said, “I’m so sorry.”

But prosecutors said in a statement last week that he would face a “significant” additional term in prison for convicting fraud, and criticized his apology letter, saying the 51-year-old man had not apologized for the crime.

And they recalled that during the “extremely long” cross-examination he scolded his victim for obscene language and the fact that she was a difficult client, interrogated her about family and family difficulties and tried to drive her crazy, as during his fraud, to prevent her own agents and the publisher from responding to her requests for help. ”

“The defendant, of course, had every right to defend himself in court. But he is not entitled to the benefit of remorse, doing so only when it is convenient and only after trying to humiliate his victim in public court, and for months to denigrate and insult her agent and publisher, while expressing himself for her case. against the powerful who could take advantage of it, ”the prosecutors wrote.

Copyright © 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or distributed.

Source link