Michael Avenatti faces 36-count federal indictment

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The New York prosecutors have separately accused Avenatti of trying to blackmail Nike Inc for more than $20 million.

US Atty Nick Hanna & the IRS are holding a news conference in Los Angeles at 9am Pacific time. Federal authorities seized Avenatti's jet Wednesday, officials said Thursday.

The indictment also accuses Avenatti of various tax crimes.

The most glaring example of deception and fraud was described in the indictment as scheming Avenatti allegedly did to deprive clients of money they were due from legal settlements or sales of stock and the actions he took to cover his tracks.

The indictments include the two charges filed against him in March, including allegations that Avenatti submitted fake financial information to a MS bank in order to get three loans worth $4.1 million.

As a result, that client was unable to purchase a house he sought.

In November, when the Social Security Administration requested information to determine if Johnson should continue to receive disability benefits, Avenatti said he would respond, but didn't because he knew it could lead to the discovery of his embezzlement, the indictment said.

Avenatti also allegedly raided another client's settlement in 2017 to pay $2.5 million for his portion of a jet, prosecutors said. After all, the Lawyer of the Year contest here is about the lawyer who best dominates the year's news, and for all the attention Michael Avenatti received combating Donald Trump to secure last year's title, this year he may make as many waves defending himself.

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After prosecutors announced plans for Thursday's press conference, Avenatti tweeted that he remains "confident that justice will be done once ALL of the facts are known".

He also labeled any claims that he mishandled client money as "bogus nonsense".

In an emailed statement, law firm Greenberg Gross LLP identified Client 1 as a man named Geoffrey Johnson. He responded "no" when he was asked whether Eagan Avenatti had received legal fees when it was representing ticket holders who sued the National Football League over seating snafus at the 2011 Super Bowl in Texas. Avenatti used some clients' money to pay previous clients he had swindled and "pay some of his law firm's bankruptcy creditors, including the IRS", according to the USA attorney's office.

He was also charged with 19 tax counts, including lying to an Internal Revenue Service officer, not paying personal income taxes since 2010, failing to pay taxes for his businesses, including two law firms, and pocketing payroll taxes from the Tully's Coffee chain that he owned, the indictment said.

Lawyers for Avenatti did not immediately return calls for comment on the statement.

When the IRS started garnishing the company's bank accounts, the indictment says, Avenatti ordered employees to deposit the stores' cash and credit-card receipts in new accounts under a new company name.

In a case involving one client, Avenatti allegedly funneled a $2.75 million settlement into his bank accounts and spent $2.5 million on a private airplane, the indictment said.

"I intend to fully fight all charges and plead NOT GUILTY". Trump has denied the affair.

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