President Donald Trump is seeking more than $300,000 in legal fees from Stormy Daniels after a California judge recently dismissed the adult film star's defamation suit against the president.
Trump's lawyers filed the court documents Monday in Los Angeles, seeking a total of $341,559.50 in attorney's fees from Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, the Washington Examiner reported. Lawyer Michael Avenatti represented Daniels in the case that was originally filed in New York.
Daniels “filed this action, not because it had any merit, but instead for the ulterior purposes of raising her media profile, engaging in political attacks against the president by herself and her attorney, who has appeared on more than 150 national television news interviews attacking the President and now is exploring a run for the presidency himself in 2020,” according to the court documents.
Daniels has alleged that she had an affair with Trump a dozen years ago. He has denied the claim.
What's the story?
The defamation battle started in April over a tweet by Trump. He wrote that Daniels was a "total con job" after her claim that she had been threatened by a man in Las Vegas to keep her mouth shut about her alleged affair with the president.
U.S. District Judge James Otero dismissed Daniels' lawsuit citing the First Amendment.
"The court agrees with Mr. Trump’s argument because the tweet in question constitutes ‘rhetorical hyperbole’ normally associated with politics and public discourse in the U.S.,” Otero said in his decision.
The judge ordered Daniels to pay Trump's legal fees.
“This is a number created out of whole cloth," Avenatti said in a statement to the Examiner. “And it is nothing compared to what he will owe my client from the main NDA case.”
Earlier this year, Michael Cohen admitted that he paid Daniels $130,000 to keep quiet about her alleged tryst with Trump before the 2016 presidential election as part of a nondisclosure agreement.
Daniels has also filed a lawsuit asking the court to nullify the agreement because it was never signed by Trump.