It seems that Miami Heat center Hassan Whiteside is dealing with some issues off the court, as it was recently discovered that the big man wired $2.75 million to attorney Michael Avenatti.
The money was intended to go to Whiteside’s former girlfriend, Alexis Gardner, but was instead embezzled by Avenatti, which came to light in bank records and in an April 10 indictment of the Los Angeles lawyer.
Avenatti represented Gardner, as she was looking to file a potential lawsuit against Whiteside. It’s unclear what she would have alleged, according to the Los Angeles Times, but a settlement was quickly reached.
Whiteside was expected to pay $3 million in total, with the $2.75 million being his first payment. $1 million of that was to be paid to Avenatti in legal fees, yet prosecutors allege that the attorney immediately took $2.5 million to buy a share of a private jet.
“We entered into a mutually agreed upon settlement more than two years ago following the end of our relationship; a settlement that reflected Alexis’ investment of time and support over a number of years as Hassan pursued a career in the NBA,” Whiteside and Gardner told the Los Angeles Times in a statement released by his agent.
“It is unfortunate that something that was meant to be kept private between us is now being publicly reported. We have both moved on amicably and wish nothing but the best for each other.”