SANTA ANA (CNS) - Newport Beach attorney Michael Avenatti, best known for representing the adult film actress who became embroiled in a legal battle with President Donald Trump over hush money in an alleged affair between the two, was scheduled to make his first appearance in Santa Ana federal court on Monday on charges of bank and wire fraud.
Avenatti, 48, of Century City, is accused by federal prosecutors of embezzling a client's money to pay off his own expenses and debts, including his coffee business.
Avenatti, facing another federal case in New York for allegedly extorting shoemaker giant Nike, has been using Twitter since his arrest to post receipts and other information he alleges shows corruption on the part of the company in recruiting young athletes.
In the Orange County case against Avenatti, he is accused of misappropriating funds due to a client arising out of a $1.6 million settlement, prosecutors said.
Avenatti allegedly used some of the money to pay expenses for Global Baristas US LLC, which had Tully's Coffee stores in California and Washington state, prosecutors said.
The attorney also is accused of defrauding a bank in Mississippi to get three loans for a total of $4.1 million for his law firm by submitting bogus income tax returns for 2011, 2012, and 2013, years in which he did not file tax returns, prosecutors allege.
The attorney is expected to enter a plea at a future hearing.
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