BOSTON - A Mattapoisett man today pleaded guilty to charges that he attempted to extort $10,000 from a South Coast businessman.
On several occasions during July 2011, Daniel A. Spooner, 53, demanded a $10,000 payment from a businessman who operates a vending machine business in Massachusetts. Spooner told him that he was a “strong arm” guy for an unidentified “made member” of La Cosa Nostra in Providence and that the $10,000 was a “protection” payment. Spooner said that if the victim failed to make the payment, he or his family would be harmed. Spooner threatened the victim both over the telephone and in person. On Aug. 1, 2011, during a meeting between the victim and Spooner, Spooner became upset and made further threats when the victim gave him $1,000 instead of the $10,000 payment.
Following his arrest on Aug. 5, 2011, he was detained without bail. Magistrate Judge Judith Gail Dein found that Spooner posed a serious risk of danger to the community and to the victim.
U.S. District Judge Patti B. Saris scheduled sentencing for Mar. 16, 2012. Spooner faces up to 20 years in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release, and a $ 250,000 fine.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division, made the announcement today. The case was investigated by the FBI’s Providence office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael L. Tabak of Ortiz’s Organized Crime Strike Force Unit.