WASHINGTON — Adult film star Stormy Daniels and attorney Michael Avenatti, two figures at the heart of one of President Donald Trump’s most legally perilous scandals, have parted ways.
In a tweet, Daniels said that she will now be represented by Tulsa, Okla.-based attorney Clark Brewster.
I have retained Clark Brewster as my personal lawyer and have asked him and his firm to review all legal matters involving me. Upon completion of Mr. Brewster’s review and further consultation with me, I anticipate Mr. Brewster will serve as my primary counsel on all legal issues
— Stormy Daniels (@StormyDaniels) March 12, 2019
Avenatti, who became a media celebrity by aligning himself with Daniels, released a statement wishing his former client well, but granting no insight into the split, citing attorney-client privilege.
Please see below statement relating to our representation of Stormy Daniels. pic.twitter.com/RgXd4DXf4X
— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) March 12, 2019
Daniels’ alleges that she had an affair with Trump in 2006, a claim that she was paid $130,000 in hush money to conceal during the height of the 2016 campaign.
Trump’s former attorney and fixer Michael Cohen told prosecutors in the Southern District of New York that he had arranged the payment as well as an additional sum to a former Playboy model in order to influence the election.
Cohen, who pleaded guilty last December to two campaign- finance violations, said Trump directed him to make the payments.
While Trump has not been charged, the payments could present a legal headache for Trump, particularly when he leaves office.
To that end, Trump denied last week that the payment was a campaign contribution.
It was not a campaign contribution, and there were no violations of the campaign finance laws by me. Fake News!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 7, 2019
Trump has denied having an affair with her.
Daniels made news last week after a U.S. District judge in Los Angeles dismissed a lawsuit she had filed aimed at rescinding the non-disclosure agreement.
Both Daniels and Avenatti claimed they found the ruling favorable.
Correction: Judge tosses out NDA!
More than a year ago when I was being threatened with a 20 million lawsuit, I asked a judge to toss out this illegal NDA. Glad I stood my ground & kept fighting. https://t.co/Ra5iQerx9e
— Stormy Daniels (@StormyDaniels) March 8, 2019
Yet again, lots of misreporting going on. Be clear: The Court specifically found that Stormy received everything she asked for in the lawsuit – she won. How people can claim this is a “loss” after we forced Trump and Cohen to cave and Cohen has been convicted, etc. is a mystery.
— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) March 8, 2019
Last October a federal judge dismissed a defamation lawsuit Avenatti had filed against Trump on behalf of Daniels for calling her a liar. Two months later, the same judge ordered her to pay Trump $293,000 for his legal fees.