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March 26, 2019

FMR. PORN STAR LAWYER AVENATTI CHARGED IN $20M NIKE EXTORTION

(Reuters) – Attorney Michael Avenatti, who represented adult film star Stormy Daniels in her legal battles with U.S. President Donald Trump, was charged on Monday with what prosecutors said was an attempt to “shake down” Nike Inc for over $20 million.

Avenatti, who was also hit with separate embezzlement and fraud charges in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, was arrested in New York.

A federal magistrate judge ordered him released on $300,000 bond during a hearing in U.S. District Court in New York. A subdued Avenatti, appeared in the courtroom wearing a dark gray suit, sitting with federal public defenders.

Trump: Russia Probe Architects ‘Treasonous’ and ‘Evil’

(Reuters) – President Donald Trump, cleared by Special Counsel Robert Mueller of conspiring with Russia in the 2016 U.S. election, on Monday vented his anger at the inquiry and vowed investigations into unnamed political enemies who did “evil” and “treasonous things.”

The Republican president and his allies in Congress went on the offensive a day after the release of a summary of Mueller’s report gave him a political victory ahead of his 2020 re-election bid, with no allegations of criminal wrongdoing brought against him at the end of a nearly two-year-long inquiry.

Rolling Stone’s Taibbi: Media’s Credibility May Be Destroyed

The summary of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report – no collusion, no obstruction – was a “death blow” to the media’s credibility, the “journalistic equivalent of walking outside without pants,” according to Rolling Stone editor Matt Taibbi.

“In light of yesterday’s news, I’m releasing this last chapter of Hate Inc. early. WMD damaged the media’s reputation. Russiagate may have destroyed it,” Taibbi tweeted Saturday, teasing his blog post that rebuked “Russiagate” as “this generation’s WMD [weapons of mass destruction].”

New York Poised to Levy Traffic Tax

New York is ready to become the first city in the country to hit up drivers for entering the busiest parts of the city — a scheme called “congestion pricing,” The New York Times reported.

State leaders justify the toll as needed to help pay for the troubled subways — enabling the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to raise billions in bonds to modernize the system, the Times noted.

Texas Border Checkpoints Closed to Clear Asylum Backlog

Nearly a handful of immigration checkpoints in Texas and New Mexico have been closed off so border patrol agents can help process and transport asylum seekers to clear the backlog of some 829,000 pending cases, Texas Monthly reports.

The checkpoints were located in the El Paso Border Patrol sector.”It’s really out of control. It’s bad,” one official told the outlet of the record number of families crossing the border.

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