A former attorney for porn star Stormy Daniels, who’s locked in a legal battle with President Trump after saying that she had an affair with Trump more than a decade ago, has fired back at his former client after she accused him of becoming a “puppet” for Trump and his attorney Michael Cohen.
Daniels — real name: Stephanie Clifford — filed suit against her former attorney Keith Davidson on Wednesday, accusing him of having “colluded” with Trump and alleging that he “hatched a plan” with Cohen to get the porn star to publicly deny she ever had sex with Trump.
“Mr. Davidson abdicated his role as an advocate and fiduciary of his client Ms. Clifford and instead elected to be a puppet for Mr. Cohen and Mr. Trump in order to advance their interests at the expense of Ms. Clifford,” the lawsuit states.
It only took a day for Davidson to fire back on Thursday, filing an answer to Daniels’ complaint — along with a counterclaim against Daniels and her current attorney, Michael Avenatti.
Oh, and he also filed a cross-claim against Cohen, alleging that Cohen violated his privacy.
In his answer to Daniels’ complaint, Davidson denies a number of the complaint’s assertions, including that, after Davidson negotiated a $130,000 agreement with Cohen to keep quiet about her alleged relationship with Trump, Davidson “continued to regularly communicate with Mr. Cohen to the detriment of Ms. Clifford.”
“This assertion by Ms. Clifford is false,” Davidson’s answer reads. “In truth, Ms. Clifford on her own behalf and by and through her manager, Gina Rodriguez, contacted Davidson seemingly hundreds of times in order to request that Davidson contact Cohen and obtain authority and/or to convince Cohen that various financial opportunities/activities that Clifford wished to partake in were not violative of the agreement.”
Davidson also asserts that, contrary to Daniels’ complaint, Daniels was “eager” to appear on Sean Hannity’s Fox News show, “as she stated her desire to ‘increase her public exposure’ and thus her earning capacity. Moreover Clifford was clear in her desire that she would say and do whatever necessary in order to prevent the contractual remedy of disgorgement of the $130,000 settlement funds she had received more than a year earlier.”
Davidson’s defamation per se counterclaim against Daniels and Avenatti alleges, ” Countless reckless and false statements have been made against Davidson by the Counter-defendants since Avenatti began what Hon. Judge Kimba Wood referred to as his ‘Publicity Tour.'”
The counterclaim takes particular issue with an Avenatti tweet reading, “Keith Davidson should have been charged after his arrest for extortion not long ago.[…]. Watch him now try and distract away from his own unethical conduct. Ms. Daniels deserved better.”
“Keith Davidson has never been arrested for extortion as falsely alleged by defendants,” Davidson’s counterclaim reads, adding, “As a proximate result of the publication and republication of these defamatory statements by Counter-Defendants and each of them, Davidson has suffered injury to his personal, business and professional reputation including suffering embarrassment, humiliation, severe emotional distress, shunning, anguish, fear, loss of employment, and employability, and significant economic loss and future earnings, all to his economic, emotional and general damage in an amount according to proof.”
In a statement to TheWrap, Avenatti called Davidson “an embarrassment to the profession” and his claims “frivolous.”
“There is no question that at the end of this, Keith Davidson will be disbarred from the practice of law. He is a proven liar and his conduct is abhorrent,” Avenatti said. “He is an embarrassment to the profession and seems to have forgotten what the attorney-client privilege is all about. We look forward to having his frivolous claims thrown out of court.”
Davidson’s crossclaim against Trump attorney Cohen alleges violation of the California Invasion of Privacy act, stating, ”Davidson is informed and believes and thereon alleges that Cohen … surreptitiously and intentionally recorded several telephone calls between he and Davidson while Davidson was in California.”
It continues, “Davidson never consented to the recordation of any phone calls he had with Cohen as he believed the calls were confidential.”
TheWrap has reached out to Cohen’s attorney for comment.
In a statement provided to TheWrap on Wednesday, after Daniels filed her suit, Davidson’s spokesman Dave Wedge called the complaint “outrageously frivolous.”
“This outrageously frivolous lawsuit is yet another desperate attempt by Michael Avenatti to continue his ‘publicity tour,’ as well as divert attention from the recent allegations against him relating to bankruptcy proceedings and the failure to withhold millions of federal employee taxes,” Wedge said. “That said, Attorney Davidson is very happy that he has filed this lawsuit because he strongly believes that the filing constitutes a full and complete waiver of the attorney-client privilege. Thankfully, the truth can now finally come out to rebut the false narrative about Attorney Davidson that Mr. Avenatti has been pushing in his more than 175 television appearances and countless other media interviews. Attorney Davidson believes that the American people deserve to know the entire truth – and they soon will. This lawsuit has made that happen.”
Trump has denied having an affair with Daniels.