Did you ever imagine, dear readers, that the Paula Deen Racism Scandal would eventually involve the FBI? No? That’s because this story will probably never stop getting better. FBI agents and local sheriff deputies arrested Thomas George Paculis, 62, of Newfield, N.Y. on Friday, after he sent letters and emails to Paula Deen’s lawyers attempting to extort her in the amount of $250,000.
He claimed to have information about Paula that “would damage [her] in so many ways that it would sink [her] ship before it left the dock.”
After Deen’s devastating deposition leaked, Paculis sent a letter to her lawyer reading, in part:
“I am about to go public with statements refuting your clients statements about using the ‘N’ word in her business practices at Lady and Son’s… The statements are true and damning enough that the case for Jackson will be won on it’s merit alone…”
However, he went on, “there is a price for such information…”
Paula’s lawyer, Greg Hodges, alerted the FBI of the extortion attempt, and they advised him to negotiate Paculis down to $200,000 and continue corresponding.
Then, after Paculis and Hodges had negotiated their final price, Paula’s extortionist contacted the attorneys of her accuser Lisa Jackson, in an attempt to pit them in a bidding war against The Butter Queen for the information, which would allegedly ensure them winning their lawsuit. That email read, in part:
“Now the burning question is…do you want in…I still have the chance to bring this together, but time is slowly running out…I have them hooked, but reeling this sucker in is gonna be hard without help…give me a call…”
We kind of wish the FBI had let this crafty son of a gun push the envelope a little further. It was just getting good.
Paculis was released on bail in his initial hearing, but he’s to ordered to appear in federal court in Savannah on July 16. We, as always, will keep you posted. In the meantime, let’s start brainstorming fantasy casts for the inevitable Paula Deen extortion plot Lifetime movie, shall we?
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