Michael Avenatti, the California attorney known for representing adult film star Stormy Daniels and who had been a leading antagonist of President Donald Trump was arrested in Los Angeles Tuesday by IRS agents and taken into federal custody following a day-long disciplinary hearing in which the California State Bar is asking a judge to prevent Avenatti from practicing law because he poses a “threat of substantial harm to the public” if he continues to perform legal work, according to ABC News.
The dramatic event unfolded when Avenatti was on the stand, the court took a break and IRS agents placed him under arrest. Multiple sources told ABC News that Avenatti is accused of violating the terms of his pre-trial release. “It was not immediately clear what he allegedly did to violate those terms because the documents are under seal,” writes ABC News.
Avenatti reportedly said he was “completely innocent” as he was led from the courthouse.
Tuesday’s hearing included allegations that Avenatti stole nearly $840,000 in settlement money owed to Gregory Barela, his former client. Avenetti allegedly kept the cash for himself. He still owes Barela $710,000 but denies any wrongdoing.