Livestream Deposition of Michael Avenatti Pal Goes Off The Rails

LOS ANGELES—Michael Avenatti, the once-jet-setting former lawyer for AVN Hall of Famer Stormy Daniels in her lawsuit against Donald Trump, is having a tough day. With prosecutors trying to send him back to jail, a judge on Wednesday slapped down his latest attempt to have his next trial date postponed. Also on Wednesday, a livestreamed deposition of his friend Jay Manheimer, who has hosted Avenatti in his Venice, California, home during the lawyer’s release from jail, went south due to technical difficulties, and a startling admission by Manheimer himself. The deposition was streamed live, and members of the public were able to listen to the proceedings via a dial-in number. But apparently many listeners were not listening on a muted line, causing interference that rendered many exchanges unintelligible. At one point, Avenatti himself interjected, accusing prosecutors of violating his due process rights with the unintelligible conversations. His complaints led to a discussion of whether the voice on the phone was actually Avenatti’s, or an imposter. On Monday, Avenatti filed a 17-page brief petitioning federal judge Jesse Furman to postpone his next trial date, which is now set for October 13. Avenatti is accused of embezzling nearly $300,000 from Daniels by diverting her publisher’s advance for a 2018 book into his own bank account. He also faces charges on a number of other alleged financial crimes. In his brief, Avenatti argues at length that due to the COVID-19 crisis, his defense will be unable to prepare for an October 13 trial. But in a one-paragraph reply on Wednesday, Furman said he was “mystified” by the brief. Furman noted that the October 13 date had not been finalized and that the defense and prosecution together had been instructed to submit a joint letter no later than 60 days before the scheduled trial stating whether it would be feasible to proceed. The judge said that Avenatti’s 17-page “objection” to the October 13 date was “premature and will be disregarded.” Things didn’t go much better on Wednesday afternoon when Manheimer gave a deposition about whether Avenatti had used his computer to create his own legal defense filings. Avenatti was released from Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan on April 24 due to fears that he could contract coronavirus infection in jail. He has been under house arrest in Manheimer’s home ever since. But a condition of his release was that he is forbidden from using an internet-enabled computer. But in Wednesday’s three-and-a-half-hour deposition, according to an account by former NBC News legal analysis Ronald Richards, Manheimer admitted that he did not think it was a problem to allow Avenatti to use the computer if the internet connection was switched off.  “This is a flagrant violation and I predict he will have his bail revoked,” Richards wrote on his Twitter account. Photo by CBS Evening News YouTube Screen Capture 

written by: Lawrence Avery

source: Livestream Deposition of Michael Avenatti Pal Goes Off The Rails | AVN