Newfield man tried to bilk Paula Deen out of money

Newfield man tried to bilk Paula Deen out of money

Updated 12 p.m., Monday, July 8, 2013

More on the case involving a man arrested in Newfield who federal prosecutors say tried to swindle a quarter of a million dollars out of Paula Deen.

62-year-old Thomas George Paculis was arrested in Newfield Friday, where he was reportedly house-sitting.

Paculis e-mailed Deen’s attorney and spoke with him on the phone, asking for 250-thousand dollars.

In return, Paculis said he would keep quiet with “true and damning statements” about Deen, who was sued after racial and sexual discrimination accusations were made by a former general manager of one of her restaurants.

Court documents show Paculis allegedly called the attorney of that general manager, asking if he and client “wanted in.”

Paculis faces a court date next week on an extortion charge.

More Local Headlines

in Local

New York, Facebook team up to fight sex trafficking

state leg

Officials say the partnership opens up "a new front" in the fight to combat online sex trafficking.

in Local

Business leaders oppose $15 minimum wage hike


Members of the Business Council of New York say they're against raising minimum wage to $15 an hour for many reasons.

in Local

Health Department seeks information after dog bite


Health officials say the dog bit a man on Sunday, and needs to be found and checked for rabies.

in Local

Reed speaks in Washington on education, college tuition


Congressman Tom Reed says he has a new plan for education to lower tuition costs using endowment money.

in Local

Mistrial declared in Charles Tan murder case


After eight days of deliberations, judge in Charles Tan murder case declared mistrial Thursday morning; Charles Tan will remain free on bail