Avenatti released from jail on $300,000 bond

Attorney Michael Avenatti was released Monday evening from jail on $300,000 bond, according to multiple reports.

Avenatti did not enter a plea during a court appearance Monday, CNN reported. He reportedly surrendered his passport and was ordered not to contact an unnamed witness.

Federal prosecutors in New York announced earlier Monday that Avenatti had been charged with extortion.

{mosads}The charges are related to allegations that Avenatti, who was formerly the lawyer for adult-film star Stormy Daniels, threatened to release damaging information about Nike if the company didn’t pay him nearly $25 million.

“Avenatti used illegal and extortionate threats for the purpose of obtaining millions of dollars in payments from a public company,” Geoffrey Berman, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, said Monday, according to The New York Times. 

“Calling this anticipated payout a retainer or a settlement doesn’t change what it was — a shakedown. When lawyers use their law licenses as weapons, as a guise to extort payments for themselves, they are no longer acting as attorneys,” he added.

Separately, federal prosecutors in California on Monday charged Avenatti with bank and wire fraud.

Avenatti told reporters Monday that he would “never stop fighting the good fight” against powerful corporations and individuals and said he expects to be “fully exonerated” of the charges, according to The Associated Press.

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