Mar 13, 2018, 10:23 AM ET

Porn star's lawyer gives Trump team an ultimatum: Take the money back by noon, or else


The lawyer for adult-film star Stormy Daniels says that they have not heard from Donald Trump’s team about the offer to pay back the $130,000 of reported “hush” money she received from the president’s longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen to buy her silence on her alleged 2006 affair with the then-real estate mogul turned reality television star.

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Daniels’ attorney Michael Aventatti told "Good Morning America" that "if the deadline passes then the offer is going to be automatically withdrawn and we're going to gear up." The deadline, he said, is set for 12:01 p.m. on Tuesday.

Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, recently filed suit against Trump, claiming that the nondisclosure agreement she signed before the 2016 election was invalid because Trump never signed the document himself. The contract refers to Clifford throughout as Peggy Peterson and Trump as David Dennison and has a blank where "DD" was supposed to sign.

"We believe he did not sign the agreement so that he would have deniability,” Aventatti said on "Good Morning America. "The same deniability that we're seeing right now, so that he could claim that he knew nothing about it.”

In reaction to the news of the lawsuit, White Houses Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters that a recent arbitration hearing "was won in the president's favor." With that victory, Trump legal team reportedly secured a temporary restraining order against Daniels to prevent her from speaking publicly about the alleged affair.

One of the outstanding questions that Aventatti wants answered is what role, if any, Trump played in arranging the payment to Daniels. A watchdog group called Common Cause has filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission about the payoff arguing that it amounted to an unreported in-kind campaign contribution, which would be a violation of campaign finance laws.

"Did [Trump] have anything to do with this payment?” Aventatti asked. “Did he reimburse Mr. Cohen? Did he have a surrogate reimburse Mr. Cohen?"

PHOTO: Stormy Daniels attends the 2018 Adult Video News Awards held at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Jan. 27, 2018, in Las Vegas.Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images, FILE
Stormy Daniels attends the 2018 Adult Video News Awards held at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Jan. 27, 2018, in Las Vegas.

Trump has denied the affair, and Cohen has said that he was never directly or indirectly reimbursed by Trump for the payment.

If the contract is upheld, Daniels stands to face a $1,000,000 penalty for every breach of the nondisclosure agreement, but Aventatti said that he does not think that any court will uphold the terms.

"If the plan by Mr. Cohen and the administration is that they're going to pursue millions of dollars of damages against a private citizen who wants to exercise her First Amendment right, bring it,” Aventatti said. “That's our position. Bring it. Because our position is that the agreement was never signed.”

The contract states that Daniels cannot "publish any text messages, photos, and/or videos" relating to Trump, and it also states that any such materials should have been turned over or destroyed, but Aventatti said that those terms would only be upheld "had [the contract] been valid and had it been signed."

Cohen has built his reputation as being a 'pit bull' for Trump, but Aventatti said that doesn't scare him.

"He prides himself on being a pit bull,” he said of Cohen. “I'm a pit bull too and we're not going away.”

News - Porn star's lawyer gives Trump team an ultimatum: Take the money back by noon, or else

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  • Steven Miller

    Blast that sexual predator orange moron traitor out the pay no play. life isn't a Yogurt commercial you Oscar loser wannabe.

  • Thomas

    Perhaps it is well that she wants to give the money back.

    If Trump gives a woman like that money
    She will just end up peeing it away


  • Derek

    Sounds like extortion and blackmail.

  • Shut Up Morty

    I heard/read that there may be recordings, videos, etc. that would prove the affair. OMG... I hope there is, but I seriously don't want to see Dump in a funny position with a porn star. GROSS

  • Arryandan

    This "Christian" president s a sleazy human being. (something juries have said about Trump, after finding in Trump's favor). It makes me happy I'm not this type of "Christian".

  • george

    Does it really matter that she was wired the money or whether Mr T sign the agreement? The fact that he still denies the affair shows it never happened, so let Miss D produce what she has as it will either prove she is a liar or demonstrate the integrity, honesty of the a President's word. In my book Mr T has the upper hand as he can put this matter to bed (no pun intended) immediately by letting Miss D show her cards. You never know the texts, pictures, videos etc might even have a way of being leaked by WikiLeaks.

  • Weather3014

    What kind of lawyer is this? No it doesn't need to be signed. In fact some agreements are verbal only. Apparently she signed it and took the money signifying that she at least understood the agreement and in exchange for her silence took the money. That is a contract. Quid pro quo.

  • virgillionhere

    Stormy Weather

  • kritikosman

    Or else(?)--Let's go with that one!

  • milolewis

    Trump ... the gift that just keeps on giving .

  • Tex_Dude

    Lots of people shake their head but with Trump it seems to almost make sense....

  • ohverify

    It's now over 7 hours past the noon deadline. What's happening?

  • Sarah Levine

    Dear god, please no videos! Haven't we suffered enough with this Trump administration?

  • Steve Smith

    This makes Trump look look like a God to college males who go out every week to score.

  • EastCoastGirl

    She's an old harlot. She needs to retire. I don't know how much longer men in their right minds will pay to see her. They can cop to 20s on the strip in Vegas!

  • Steve Smith

    So what is this woman's claim to fame? A porn star who had sex with someone famous?
    Wow, what a news story. This is her only claim to fame? What a joke.

  • whitepine

    I can't wait to hear her story. I guess it will be a mini series with Trump as the star. That should make Trump happy. He likes being a celebrity on TV.

  • notagain

    Look up the details of that arbitration hearing dear Sarah talks about and you'll laugh out loud. It was a one sided farce.

  • Erwin Schrodinger

    Start a go fund me account... lots will pay to see this play our in court.

  • JBump

    Seems like this is a good career move for her. Really gonna put her back on top.

  • Jack25

    Evangelic women are leaving Trump camp in droves over this.