Small business owner goes viral after saying Michael Avenatti owes him $160,179

Meet David Morris, co-CEO of Dillanos, a coffee roasting company based in Seattle, WA. This tweet of his from May 8 has gone viral after accusing Michael Avenatti, lawyer for Stormy Daniels, of owing Dillanos a whopping $160,179:

So @StormyDaniels hot shot lawyer @MichaelAvenatti , owes my small company @Dillanos $160,179 for coffee. He talks a big talk about integrity. We trusted him. Retweet if you think he should pay up! #Tullyscoffee

— David J. Morris (@coffeemaverick) May 8, 2018

That’s “A LOT” of coffee:

That’s A LOT of coffee. https://t.co/9PCM7DychA

— Tim Young (@TimRunsHisMouth) May 10, 2018

Morris’ complaint is related to Tully’s Coffee, which was purchased out of bankruptcy by Avenatti’s investment firm in 2013. From the Seattle Times:

He’s become famous as the brash lawyer for the porn star who purportedly bedded the future president, but before Michael Avenatti accused Donald Trump and his attorney of a payoff scheme to muzzle Stormy Daniels, he faced allegations of dubious business dealings as owner of a flailing coffee chain.

Since his investment firm bought bankrupt Tully’s Coffee for $9.15 million at auction five years ago, Avenatti’s company has been named in more than 50 state and federal legal complaints, including commercial lawsuits, breach of lease actions and warrants for unpaid taxes, court records show.

Avenatti partnered with actor Patrick Dempsey on the purchase. From Business Insider:

Avenatti purchased Tully’s out of bankruptcy in 2013, in partnership with actor Patrick Dempsey, who is best known for his role as Derek “McDreamy” Shepherd in the TV show “Grey’s Anatomy.” Dempsey sued Avenatti in August 2013 to break off the partnership.

Since then Tully’s has struggled. More than 45 suits have been filed against the chain’s parent company, which Avenatti says he no longer owns. In 2017, the company owed about $5 million in unpaid taxes to the Internal Revenue Service. And in March the coffee chain abruptly closed all locations.

The Dempsey-Avenatti partnership quickly fell apart, however:

According to Dempsey, Avenatti didn’t actually have the funds to buy Tully’s. In the suit, Dempsey claims his business adviser found out through an internet search that Avenatti had borrowed $2 million with an “exorbitant” interest rate of 15% to fund the deal, sparking Dempsey’s decision to sue his way out of the partnership.

“Avenatti concealed the Loan and the Security Agreement from Dempsey,” the complaint says.

[…]

The case was settled out of court, with Dempsey dissolving his relationship with Avenatti and cutting ties with Tully’s. In a statement, Dempsey wished “the Company and Michael all the best,” saying he was “happy to have been a part of the effort that brought awareness to Tully’s brand.”

And the company owes millions in unpaid taxes:

Global Baristas failed to pay $4,998,198 in federal taxes last year, according to a tax lien filed by the IRS in August 2017. That is in addition to thousands of dollars in state taxes the company failed to pay over the years, according to more than 20 state tax liens filed in California and Washington.

As of the writing of this post, Morris’ tweet has over 17,000 retweets and 20,000 likes.

Morris went on to say that politics has nothing to do with his tweet and he just wants the money owed to his company:

I Just want the money that is owed to my company @Dillanos. We hire great people regardless of political affiliations.

— David J. Morris (@coffeemaverick) May 9, 2018

I’d ask him to pay up. This is not a political thing it’s roasting coffee and selling it to someone and getting paid for it as agreed!

— David J. Morris (@coffeemaverick) May 8, 2018

We are talking about someone that actually owes me money. Not sure what your point is. Get political somewhere else. I just want to get paid

— David J. Morris (@coffeemaverick) May 9, 2018

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