Electoral fraud

Michael Avenatti charged with fraud and extortion

Celebrity lawyer Michael Avenatti represented Stormy Daniels
Michael Avenatti. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Federal prosecutors in New York announced Monday that they will charge lawyer Michael Avenatti, who gained notoriety for his representation of Stormy Daniels and a discredited Brett Kavanaugh accuser, with an attempt to extort $20 million from Nike. He is also being charged with wire and bank fraud by prosecutors in California.

The big picture: Avenatti tweeted just before the charges were announced, saying he would hold a press conference Tuesday "to disclose a major high school/college basketball scandal perpetrated by @Nike that we have uncovered." He was arraigned in New York on Monday evening and released on a $300,000 bond. He will be arraigned in his second case in Los Angeles on April 1.

McCrae Dowless indicted in N.C. election fraud case

McCrae Dowless. Photo: Justin Kase Conder for The Washington Post via Getty Images

McCrae Dowless, the political operative at the heart of the election fraud case in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District, was indicted on seven charges Wednesday, per the Wake County District Attorney's office.

Details: Dowless is facing counts of obstruction of justice, conspiracy to commit obstruction of justice and possession of absentee ballots. He worked on behalf of Republican candidate Mark Harris, who has announced he will not run in the district's new election, and Dowless stands accused of collecting and filling out hundreds of voters’ absentee ballots.

Go deeper: North Carolina investigators find evidence of significant fraud in House election