(FOX NEWS) — A day after a federal judge rejected Michael Avenatti’s request to be represented by a public defender, the embattled attorney announced Wednesday that he had hired his own private counsel for his trial on charges that he defrauded clients, a bank and the federal government.

Avenatti appeared for a short hearing in Santa Ana, Calif., federal court alongside Dean Steward, whom Avenatti called an “incredibly well qualified” lawyer.

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