Michael Avenatti Claims He Is Willing To Testify In Trump Hush-Money Trial
Attorney Michael Avenatti speaks about R. Kelly's alleged victims after the singer's arrest on child pornography charges, during a press conference in Chicago, Illinois on July 15, 2019.

Disgraced lawyer Michael Avenatti said he is willing to testify as part of the hush-money trial in New York against former President Donald Trump that involves his former client, adult film star Stormy Daniels.

The New York Post reported on Saturday that Avenatti spoke with the outlet by phone from the Los Angeles federal prison where he is serving more than a decade behind bars for crimes that include extortion, fraud, and embezzlement.

“The defense has contacted me,” Avenatti said, adding, “I’d be more than happy to testify; I don’t know that I will be called to testify, but I have been in touch with Trump’s defense for the better part of the year.”

Though the report said that Avenatti refused to divulge specific details about conversations with Trump’s team, it noted that a source close to Trump affirmed that ongoing discussions were taking place.

Trump faces 34 felony counts of falsifying business records to allegedly cover up payments in a bid to conceal damaging information as part of a “catch-and-kill” scheme to influence the 2016 election. He has pleaded not guilty and criticized what he says is a “political persecution.”

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who is leading the case, refers to Daniels as receiving one such payment of $130,000 in exchange for her silence concerning an alleged tryst with Trump. The former president denies the alleged affair took place.

With the jury selection process completed last week, opening statements are set to begin Monday. Michael Cohen, Trump’s former attorney who allegedly facilitated payments to Daniels and others, is expected to be a key witness despite his own criminal history.

Avenatti once represented Daniels in lawsuits against Trump, but in 2022 he was found guilty of stealing nearly $300,000 in book advance payments from his former client, among other crimes. He now appears sympathetic to Trump despite a history of criticizing him.

“There’s no question [the trial] is politically motivated because they’re concerned that he may be re-elected,” Avenatti said. “If the defendant was anyone other than Donald Trump, this case would not have been brought at this time.”


Avenatti claimed to be “bothered by the fact that Trump, in my view, has been targeted” and suggested there were parallels to his situation. He said “there’s a significant chance” the four total criminal cases against Trump would “backfire” and “propel him to the White House.”

The New York Post also reported that Avenatti said he wished he had never met Daniels. Avenatti pushed back against the notion that he was speaking out because he is seeking a pardon from Trump in a potential second term.

Daniels told the news outlet that Avenatti is a “lunatic” and a “scumbag.” She also quipped about being glad she met him “because I’m the one that helped convict him so he couldn’t steal from even more unsuspecting clients.”

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