11/04/1998 AT 12:00 AM EST
In a scenario worthy of "The Sopranos," Carmine Agnello -- the husband of John Gotti's daughter Victoria -- was freed from a New York jail on Tuesday after Victoria made an offer the court couldn't refuse: She pledged $120,000 in pending royalties from her best-selling novels. The money went to pay the premium on his $2 million bail. Agnello, the owner of an auto scrap yard, is charged with conspiracy, arson and extortion against his competition. He had been inadvertently caught in a sting set up by police to capture auto thieves and chop-shop operators. Authorities say Agnello stumbled into the operation by firebombing the rival yard after the undercover cops spurned a business deal. Victoria, 36, is a successful author of thriller novels ("The Senator's Daughter," "I'll Be Watching You"). Her father, "Teflon Don" John Gotti (who once headed the Gambino crime family), is now serving a life sentence for murder and other crimes.