Michael Avenatti, CNN’s favorite anti-Trumper just a few years ago, was sentenced today to 2.5 years in prison for trying to extort Nike for over $22 million dollars:
Michael Avenatti was sentenced to two and a half years in prison Thursday after being found guilty of an extortion scheme against Nike, just one of the criminal cases against Stormy Daniels’s former lawyer and the onetime left-wing media darling.
The Justice Department’s indictment against Avenatti charged him with extortion and wire fraud, saying he tried to extort at least $22.5 million from the sporting apparel company. His three-week trial began in late January 2020, and he was found guilty the next month.
Judge Paul Gardephe of the Southern District of New York, the presiding judge during Avenatti’s 2020 trial, sentenced him to an aggregate sentence of 30 months behind bars and three years of supervised release. The judge said in the New York City courtroom on Thursday, “Mr. Avenatti’s conduct was outrageous. He hijacked his client’s claims, and he used those claims to further his own agenda — which was to extort millions of dollars from Nike to enrich himself.” The George W. Bush appointee added: “Mr. Avenatti had become drunk on the power of his platform, or what he perceived the power of his platform to be. He had become someone who operated as if the laws and rules that apply to everyone else didn’t apply to him.”
Avenatti gave a speech while crying in the courtroom just before his sentencing.
“When I was a child I dreamed about becoming a lawyer … Fighting for the little guy against the Goliaths. For years I did just that, but then I lost my way. I betrayed my own values, my friends, my family, and myself. I betrayed my profession,” Avenatti said between tears. “I’ve learned that all the fame, notoriety, and money in the world is meaningless. TV and Twitter, Your Honor, mean nothing. Everyone wants to ride in the limo with you, but few want to ride with you on the bus.”
Avenatti added: “I am truly sorry for all of the pain that I have caused to Mr. Franklin and others. I am deeply humbled before you today. Despite the deep shame and remorse, I still feel positive because I know I can do better … I am forever grateful for the love and support of my family. They have showed me this love even when I least deserved it.”
This was the guy who CNN and other outlets touted against Kavanaugh back in 2018, who brought phony allegations against the future Supreme Court Justice. They wanted to destroy him and put their trust in everyone in order to help them do it.
This is a black mark on CNN and, obviously, a huge black mark on Avenatti’s reputation. I’m glad justice has finally been served against Avenatti, who’d formerly claimed that he’d be fully exonerated because the case should have never been filed:
I am extremely pleased that the two counts alleging I engaged in a conspiracy against Nike have just been dismissed by Trump’s DOJ. I will be fully exonerated when it is all said and done. This case should have never let been filed.
— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) November 13, 2019
UPDATE: As a reminder…
CNN's Brian Stelter last year on Michael Avenatti running for president: "And looking ahead to 2020, one reason I’m taking you seriously as a contender is because of your presence on cable news.” pic.twitter.com/2Wn2bX17kx
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) May 22, 2019