Fierce celebrity lawyer Michael Avenatti was accused of embezzling nearly two million dollars after making a lucrative deal for former NBA player Hassan Whiteside's girlfriend.
Avenatti negotiated a $ 27 million lawyer for Alexis Gardner Deal for the actress and Barista, $ 2.75 million, from which Miami Heat player Whiteside, 29, transferred to a trust account set up by Avenatti in January 2017 has been. This is clear from bank records and a 10 April indictment by a California-based grand jury.  Avenatti was entitled to $ 1 million in legal fees, but he did not tell Gardner about the payment and misrepresented the terms of their agreement with Whiteside, prosecutors in the indictment said. Instead, he sent $ 2.5 million into the bank account of a law firm owned by an associate so that he could buy a share of a small private jet.
Avenatti told Gardnerthat that Whiteside's first payment was for legal fees, but that she would receive monthly payments over the next eight years. He handed over 1
Although Whiteside and Gardner confirmed the settlement in a statement, Avenatti rejected the allegations that he had acted illegally or inappropriately.
I've always been embezzled by someone and I'm looking forward to bringing all relevant documents and facts to justice, "he told the Los Angeles Times in an email. "The customers who complain are a very small fraction of the thousands of clients I've looked after in my nearly 20-year career."
The indictment of the 36-member jury refers to four other clients, of whom Avenatti allegedly stole millions of dollars, including mentally ill, paraplegic Geoffrey Ernest Johnson, and YouTube make-up artist Michelle Phan. He has also charged with tax, bank and bankruptcy fraud as well as perjury. In addition, he is in New York for investigating Nike in a federal state for extortion and conspiracy. Avenatti denies any wrongdoing.