Paula Deen Extorted: New York Man Arrested for Demanding $250,000 From Celebrity Chef

Jul 09, 2013 04:29 PM EDT | By Dina Exil

  • print
Paula Deen
Paula Deen announced plans to open a new restaurant in Tennessee. (Photo : Food Network)

A New York resident was arrested and charged with extorting money from celebrity chef Paula Deen in exchange for not releasing information on statements she allegedly made. 

Thomas George Paculis allegedly asked Deen's attorney for $250,000 to keep "true and damning" information from the media. Federal Bureau of Investigation agents and local sheriff duties arrested Paculis, 62, in Newfield, N.Y., Friday morning. 

According to Reuters, Paculis approached Lisa Jackson, former manager to the Deen's restaurants Uncle Bubba's Seafood and Oyster House," claiming to have information that was "true and damning enough that the case for Jackson will be won on its merit alone." 

Like Us on Facebook

Paculis allegedly sent an email to George Hodges, Deen's attorney, on June 24, several days after Deen's statements were made public. 

"I am about the go public with the statement refuting your client statements about using the 'N' word in her business practices at Lady and Son's," Paculis wrote according to the Huffington Post. "The statement are true and damning enough that the case for Jackson will be won on it's merit alone."

Paculis mentioned his price for information and asked Hodge to contact him. 

Hodge contacted the FBI, which instructed Hodge to respond to Paculis and negotiation a reduction in payment from $250,000 to $200,000. The two exchanged several emails and phone calls, Reuters reported. 

Deen is being sued along with her brother, Bubba Hiers, by Jackson.The lawsuit alleges sexual harassment and a work environment rife with racial slurs.

© 2014 Food World News. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.
Get the Most Popular Food Stories in a Weekly Newsletter
TrendingOn The Web
Food Biz
McDonalds

New McDonalds Slogan Lovin Beats Hatin, is The Slogan the Right Fit For McDonalds?

New McDonalds slogan lovin beats hatin stirs more comments and opinions than the fast food maker envisioned. Here’s why the new slogan ‘Lovin beats hatin’ could potentially cause more hate than love.

The second largest fastfood chain in the world will launch its first stores in India in the coming months.  Target locations will be New Delhi, Mumbai and NCR.

Burger King India Soon To Open In Coming Months

The second largest fastfood chain in the world will launch its first stores in India in the coming months. Target locations will be New Delhi, Mumbai and NCR.

Panera cuts 2014 profit forecast, shares slip

Panera Cuts 2014 Profit Forecast, Shares Slip

Panera Bread Co (PNRA.O) on Tuesday lowered its full-year earnings forecast as it works to speed up service at its popular bakery cafes.

Food Tech
5 Utah Family Members Found Dead And Poisoning Involving Pepsi Cups As Possible Cause

5 Utah Family Members Found Dead And Poisoning Involving Pepsi Cups As Possible Cause

Utah Family Found Dead – In Springfield, five family members, including two parents and three children ranging from the ages of 11 to 14, were found dead by an older son.

Swiss-based food giant Nestlé is hiring 1,000 humanoid robots as sales clerks at stores across Japan.

Nestle To Hire 1,000 Humanoid Robots In Japan For Selling Coffee And Home Espresso Machines

The first batch of robots which will be called as Pepper will be assigned on their stations at the end of the year to sell home espresso machines and coffee capsules.

"Mooncake Hot Pot" And "Mooncake Salad" Appear In Chongqing

Brain’s Calorie Counter: The Reason Behind Craving Junk Food

A new study has found that there is such a thing as the brain’s calorie counter, which explains why the brain has a tendency to choose junk food over healthier one, as it’s attempting to fill a quota. The discovery of the brain’s calorie counter explains the body’s need for fatty foods, beyond the fact that these types of meals are cheaper.

Real Time Analytics