Michael Avenatti reportedly demanded Nike pay him between $15 million and $25 million.
Michael Avenatti has been in the headlines because of the shocking information he's shared regarding R. Kelly and his alleged victims. When we spoke to the attorney, he told us that he believes Kelly will spend the rest of his life in prison, detailing the terrible things that the singer allegedly did in the uncovered sex tapes. Despite his involvement in the R. Kelly case, it appears as though Avenatti now has his own legal drama to worry about and it's pretty serious.
According to TMZ, Avenatti has been arrested and charged with extorting Nike after he demanded between $15 million and $25 million from them. The report details how Avenatti threatened to hold a press conference at the start of March Madness to announce allegations of misconduct by employees at the company. Avenatti was reportedly representing the coach of an AAU Youth Club basketball team and after a complaint was made, the attorney demanded Nike hire him for the exorbitant sum of money to conduct an internal investigation.
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Avenatti apparently gave Nike a few options. They could pay him $22.5 million to buy his silence or hire him to conduct the investigation. The report notes that Avenatti had information from the AAU coach that one or more Nike employees were funding payments to top high school basketball players, attempting to hide the evidence.
A phone call between Avenatti and Nike reportedly included several threats. "I'm not fucking around with this, and I'm not continuing to play games," said the lawyer. "You guys know enough now to know you've got a serious problem. So if you guys think that you know, we're gonna negotiate a million five, and you're gonna hire us to do an internal investigation."
Avenatti has additionally been arrested for bank and wire fraud after embezzling money from clients to cover expenses for his coffee corporation. Read our recent interview with the man here.