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Man Cops a Plea in Tom Cruise Extortion Case

Man Cops a Plea in Tom Cruise Extortion Case
Tom Cruise
Albert Ferreira/startraks

08/30/2007 05:45PM

An Arizona man arrested in July for trying to extort $1 million from Tom Cruise has agreed to enter into a plea agreement in the case.

David Hans Schmidt, 47, "gives up the right to indictment by a grand jury and agrees to plead guilty to a single-count," according to court papers obtained by Extra.

He will plead guilty to transmitting threatening communications with the intent to extort, which could lead to his serving up to two years in prison, a year of supervised release and a fine, the TV show's Web site reports.

In July, Schmidt was taken into custody by the FBI for allegedly attempting to sell Cruise a large collection of private photographs from his 2006 wedding in Italy to Katie Holmes.

At the time Cruise's lawyer, Bert Fields, told the Smoking Gun Web site that the pictures had been stolen and that Schmidt had contacted reps for Cruise earlier regarding the wedding photos.

According to Extra, the legal papers reveal that in June, Schmidt met with reps for Cruise's and said, "It would not look good for anyone if the photographs become public." In a meeting the following month, Schmidt told reps for the actor that he would "hunt down to hell and back anyone who crossed him."

This was not the first time Schmidt has been involved in the attempted sale of celebrity photos, reported the Smoking Gun, which said he tried to sell X-rated images of Jamie Foxx and topless photos of U.S. soldier Jessica Lynch, among others.
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