Porn star's lawyer: Stormy Daniels was 'threatened' to keep alleged affair with Trump secret

PHOTO: Adult film actress Stormy Daniels attends an event at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on Jan. 27, 2018 in Las Vegas.PlayEthan Miller/Getty Images, FILE
WATCH Trump's legal team making moves in Stormy Daniels case

Stormy Daniels was threatened, her lawyer says, to keep her alleged 2006 affair with Donald Trump a secret.

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Michael Avenatti, who represents the adult film star, told MSNBC’s Morning Joe on Friday that his client had even been threatened with “physical harm.” He did not provide any details or evidence of the alleged threat.

Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, is suing President Trump, claiming that a nondisclosure agreement she signed precluding her from speaking publicly about their alleged affair is invalid because Trump failed to sign the document as well.

Daniels is expected to deliver her version of the story of their encounter in a highly anticipated taped interview scheduled to air March 25 on CBS’ "60 Minutes."

PHOTO: Stormy Daniels attorney Michael Avenatti spoke to ABC News Tom Llamas on Feb. 7, 2018.ABC News
Stormy Daniels' attorney Michael Avenatti spoke to ABC News' Tom Llamas on Feb. 7, 2018.

“The American people can judge for themselves on who is telling the truth and not and, again, we're not trying to silence anyone,” Avenatti said. “We want both sides to lay out their version of the facts so the American people can decide for themselves what happened.”

Buzzfeed reported last week that Trump’s legal team was weighing a legal challenge to stop CBS from broadcasting the interview, but they have not yet filed a lawsuit.

The story has continued to gain momentum ever since the Wall Street Journal reported in January that Trump’s longtime personal attorney had arranged a $130,000 hush money payment to Daniels shortly before the 2016 presidential election.

Trump spokespersons have said that he denies Daniels’ allegations of an affair, and Trump's lawyer, Michael Cohen, has said that he was never directly or indirectly reimbursed by Trump for the payment.

PHOTO: Donald Trump responds to questions on the departure of Rex Tillerson from the news media as he departs the White House, March 13, 2018. Shawn Thew/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock
Donald Trump responds to questions on the departure of Rex Tillerson from the news media as he departs the White House, March 13, 2018.

One of the outstanding questions that Aventatti wants answered is what role, if any, Trump played in arranging the payment to Daniels. A nonpartisan 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?” Avenatti asked. “Did he reimburse Mr. Cohen? Did he have a surrogate reimburse Mr. Cohen?"

If the contract is upheld, Daniels stands to face a $1 million 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.”

Cohen's company, Essential Consultants, filed notice on Friday to move the case to federal court. The document also alleges Daniels broke the NDA 20 times and therefore owes $20 million.

Avenatti fired back at the new filing on Twitter late Friday, calling the damages claim "bogus" and saying they would continue to fight in court.

ABC News’ Meghan Keneally and James Hill contributed to this report.

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