Avenatti, lawyer known as Trump foe, indicted for financial crimes

Michael Avenatti's jet which was seized at Santa Barbara Airport on Wednesday

A federal grand jury in Los Angeles indicted celebrity attorney Michael Avenatti on 36 counts, including embezzlement, wire fraud, tax evasion and bank fraud connected to his alleged theft of tens of millions of dollars.

Following the announcement, Avenatti tweeted that he remains "confident that justice will be done". Along the way, I have made many powerful enemies. Check back for updates.

He allegedly stole millions from one client to purchase a private jet, according to the indictment, which is included in full at the bottom of this article.

Avenatti allegedly scammed another client, a paraplegic man, out of a $4 million settlement without the client's knowledge, according to the indictment.

"Money generated from one set of crimes was used to further other crimes", U.S. Attorney Nick Hanna said at a news conference.

Avenatti tweeted Thursday that he intends to fight all of the charges and says he looks forward to the truth being known, as opposed to what he characterizes as a "one-sided version".

Avenatti embezzled settlement funds and proceeds of other matters he handled from five clients and doled out small portions of what they were due to "lull" them into thinking they were getting what they were owed, prosecutors said.

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The court ordered federal agents to seize Avenatti's jet at Santa Barbara Airport on Wednesday. He was also charged with wire and bank fraud for allegedly using a client's settlement money to pay for own personal expenses.

On March 25, prosecutors in the Southern District of NY alleged that Avenatti tried to extract more than $20 million from Nike, and said if the company did not pay him, he would hold a press conference attacking the company. He allegedly also hid $2.75 million from another client.

Following Avenatti's arrest last month, The Washington Post's Devlin Barrett and Elise Viebeck reported that it marked "the latest and most remarkable chapter in the unusual public saga of the California lawyer".

According to the indictment, Avenatti withheld Tully's employment taxes from the IRS, and directed employees to deposit cash receipts into an account for Avenatti's vehicle racing company. One of his businesses, Global Baristas US LLC, failed to file employment tax returns and didn't pay $3.2 million in federal payroll taxes, which had been withheld from employee paychecks.

Avenatti also involved himself in the investigation of sexual abuse charges against R&B singer R. Kelly by giving the Chicago state's attorney's office what he said was a tape of the performer having sex with an underage girl.

Avenatti was also charged with submitting fraudulent tax returns to get more than $4 million in loans from The Peoples Bank in Biloxi, Mississippi, in 2014.

According to court documents, prosecutors said Avenatti would occasionally send Client 1 "advance" payments that didn't exceed $1,900.

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