Michael Avenatti being held in El Chapo’s former cell in Manhattan
Disgraced lawyer Michael Avenatti was transferred from a federal lockup in California to the notorious Metropolitan Correctional Center in lower Manhattan last week — and is now being held in Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s former cell, it was revealed Monday.
Avenatti’s attorney claimed in court papers filed Monday that he’s being held in solitary confinement in the “Special Housing Unit on the notorious 10-South of the MCC-New York.”
His lawyers pleaded with a judge to release him to general population in the prison, arguing he could not prepare for his trial in those conditions.
“He is in a cell reportedly once occupied by El Chapo, on a floor that houses individuals charged with terrorism offenses,” Avenatti’s attorney, Scott Srebnick, wrote.
“The temperature in his cell feels like it is in the mid-40s. He is forced to sleep with three blankets. Not surprisingly, he has been having great difficulty functioning.”
Srebnick noted that Avenatti is being held on lockdown for 24 hours a day, with a guard keeping watch from outside his cell and two cameras trained on him at all times.
He is also not allowed to shave and has only been allowed two social phone calls since he was transferred to the facility.
Avenatti is being held without bail on charges that he attempted to shakedown Nike for more that $20 million and that he extorted and embezzled money from his legal clients.
The disgraced lawyer formerly represented porn star Stormy Daniels, who claims she was paid $130,000 in 2016 by the Trump campaign in exchange for her not discussing an alleged affair she had with now-President Trump in 2006.
In addition to El Chapo, MCC also housed multi-millionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein until he killed himself in the prison in August.