Michael Avenatti found guilty of wire fraud and aggravated identity theft

Michael Avenatti was convicted this Friday on charges of wire fraud and aggravated identity theft for stealing from his former client Stephanie Clifford, better known as Stormy Daniels, CNN reports.

"Prosecutors alleged that Avenatti -- who helped negotiate the $800,000 advance for Daniels' October 2018 book 'Full Disclosure' -- defrauded his former client by instructing her literary agent to send two of the installments of the advance totaling nearly $300,000 to an account controlled by him, rather than directly to Daniels, without her knowledge," CNN's report stated.

Avenatti's legal problems began in March 2019, when he was accused of attempting to extort more than $20 million from Nike and for embezzling a client's money.

He was arrested in New York based on separate complaints filed in that city as well as in California.

Prosecutors say Avenatti accused Nike of being involved in a basketball bribery scandal and threatened to go public with his allegations unless it agreed to multi-million dollar payments to him under the guise of legal work.

In April 2019, Los Angeles prosecutors indicted him on 36 charges of theft, fraud and tax evasion, theoretically exposing him to over 300 years behind bars if convicted.

Then in May, Manhattan prosecutors charged Avenatti with falsifying documents to pay himself about $300,000 intended for Clifford as part of an advance payment for her memoir.

With additional reporting via AFP

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