Stormy Daniels' former attorney is fighting back, filing counterclaims against his former client and her new attorney for defamation. Picture: AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File

Washington - Stormy Daniels' former attorney, Keith Davidson, is fighting back, filing counterclaims Thursday against his former client and her new attorney for defamation and accusing Donald Trump's personal attorney, Michael Cohen, of recording their phone conversations without his permission.

Davidson's legal missives in federal court in California -which did not include evidence of the alleged recordings - come one day after he declared that a lawsuit Daniels filed against him amounted to her waiving attorney-client privilege. Davidson also responded to that suit on Thursday, rejecting her claim that he was not looking out for her best interest and arguing that he helped the porn star accomplish "her stated goals of monetizing her reported 2007 sexual relationship with Donald Trump."

At issue is the deal Davidson negotiated on behalf of Daniels shortly before the 2016 election, in which Cohen paid her $130 000 to keep quiet about an alleged affair with Trump one decade earlier. The numerous claims and counterclaims are stoking public interest in a relationship that Trump has denied and that Cohen sought to keep under wraps. Cohen is now under federal investigation for potential bank and wire fraud.

Davidson's new filing says that in more than 175 television appearances this year, Avenatti "has been on a crusade to falsely vilify Davidson."

Avenatti responded: "There is no question that at the end of this, Keith Davidson will be disbarred from the practice of law. He is a proven liar and his conduct is abhorrent."

Daniels' lawsuit against Davidson is her third court action related to the nondisclosure deal in the last three months. Her latest filing included text messages between Davidson and Cohen that she said show "collusion."

Not true, argued Davidson Thursday, saying she had pushed him repeatedly to make a nondisclosure deal with Cohen and wanted to do anything she could to avoid breaching the agreement and potentially having to forefeit the $130 000. He also pushed back on one particular text, in which Cohen called him "pal."

He said they have never talked about their families - "pals talk about things other than business" - shared a meal - "pals dine together" - or had a drink together - "pals share spirits."

Cohen's attorney, Brent Blakely, said Thursday night that he was reviewing the court filing and could not immediately comment.

The Washington Post