Prosecutors Tuesday complained that gasbag Michael Avenatti was yammering so loudly during testimony in his Nike extortion trial that jurors could probably hear him.
“The defendant is extremely loud,” Assistant US Attorney Robert Sobelman told Manhattan federal court Judge Paul Gardephe at the end of the trial day after the jury left the courtroom.
Sobelman said that if the prosecutors could hear Avenatti confer with his lawyers and respond to testimony, it was likely those weighing his fate could, too.
“We have really serious concerns about how this is unfolding,” Sobelman said.
Avenatti himself stood up to address the judge in response saying he would strive “to keep his voice down.”
“Needless to say your honor, I will be conscious of my voice,” said the lawyer, who appeared calm and composed despite his continued imprisonment at the Metropolitan Detention Center. “I’ve got a lot at stake, everybody knows that.”
Avenatti is accused of attempting to extort Nike out of more than $20 million, after a client came to him alleging the company was engaged in corruptly paying handlers of rising stars in youth basketball.
Jurors previously heard a recording in which Avenatti threatened to take “$10 billion” off Nike’s market cap if the company didn’t pay up.
The lawyer argues he was simply advocating for his client.