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Tompkins County man accused of blackmailing Paula Deen appears in Federal court

A Tompkins County man accused of blackmailing disgraced celebrity chef Paula Deen appeared in Federal court in Savannah, Ga., on Tuesday morning.
Savannah, Ga. (WSYR-TV) – A Tompkins County man accused of blackmailing disgraced celebrity chef Paula Deen appeared in Federal court in Savannah, Ga., on Tuesday morning.

According to Savannah.com, 62-year-old Thomas Paculis of Newfield pleaded not guilty to extortion.

Paculis lives in Newfield, but formerly resided in Savannah and Augusta, Ga. – where Deen is based.

Deen has been at the center of a media firestorm after she admitted to using racial slurs in the past.

Paculis was released on bond on Friday, July 5.

The Savannah Morning News’ website indicated that Paculis bond agreement bars him from contacting Deen or any of her businesses. He is also barred from consuming alcohol.

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