LOS ANGELES (CN) – A lawsuit brought by a former Playboy model against top Republican fundraiser Elliot Broidy was unsealed by a California judge Tuesday, revealing details about a $1.6 million hush settlement she accepted to keep quiet about her 2017 affair with Broidy and the pregnancy she ended last year.
Shera Bechard’s heavily redacted complaint, filed July 6, contains significant overlap with several other lawsuits involving President Donald Trump, his former personal attorney and “fixer” Michael Cohen, porn star and Trump-Cohen litigant Stormy Daniels and Daniels’ current and former attorneys.
Bechard says the hush agreement with Broidy was arranged by Cohen, who also arranged a hush agreement between Daniels and Trump and a $130,000 payment to her ahead of the 2016 presidential election. Daniels, real name Stephanie Clifford, claims she had an affair with Trump in 2006 – an affair Trump denies ever occurred.
Like Daniels, Bechard is also suing her now-former attorney Keith Davidson. Both women claim Davidson acted in his own best financial best interest by colluding with the other side – Cohen and Broidy and in Bechard’s case and Cohen and Trump in Daniels’.
Bechard says in her lawsuit that Davidson “treated Ms. Bechard's claims as a commodity to be traded for his own financial gain.”
She claims Davidson worked with Cohen, who then approached Broidy to “solve” his issues with Bechard. She accuses Davidson of drafting a one-sided agreement that favored Broidy, forcing her to sign away her rights and including a clause requiring her to pay $4.8 million in liquidated damages if she ever mentioned the settlement with Broidy.
Davidson’s representation was so bad, Bechard claims, that the contract she signed barred her from receiving a copy or seeing the final deal.
Broidy made two of eight installments to Bechard, failed to make the third payment on July 1, 2018. That day, The Wall Street Journal ran a story about Broidy’s missed payment.
In the article, Broidy’s attorney said there would no more payments made – leaving $1.2 million still owed to Bechard – because Davidson leaked information about the agreement to Daniels’ attorney Michael Avenatti, who in turn shared it on Twitter in April 2018.
Bechard seeks the return of $140,000 she paid Davidson for his work, the remaining money due under her deal with Broidy and damages against all defendants.
“Whatever transpired was not the fault of Ms. Bechard. She did nothing wrong. She should not be deprived of her rights because the three men described above (Mr. Broidy, Mr. Davidson, and Mr. Avenatti) decided that they could use her to their advantage,” Bechard says in her complaint.
She is represented by Los Angeles-based attorney Peter Stris, who also represented Playboy model Karen McDougal in her lawsuit against American Media, who purchased the rights to her story of an alleged affair with Trump. McDougal sued the National Enquirer publisher, accusing the company of killing her story to benefit Trump.
Earlier this month, Cohen released what appears to be an audio recording of Trump and Cohen discussing buying the rights to McDougal’s story of the alleged affair from American Media.
In the audio released to CNN by Cohen’s attorney, Trump can be heard saying “pay with cash.”
McDougal eventually settled with American Media.
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