Blackmail and Extortion
3 charged in alleged plot to extort $20 million from Saudi sheik

The young Saudi man had been in Los Angeles for about a year studying English when the horrific accusations came to his door. A woman he'd met during a 2012 family trip to Vienna had come to visit him in L.A. But not long after she arrived, the woman went to police, saying the 23-year-old Saudi had raped, tortured and imprisoned her in his tony Wilshire Boulevard high-rise condominium. The charges stunned Thamer Albalwi and his family, one of the wealthiest in his native Saudi Arabia. Quickly, they raised $3 million in bail to free him from jail. He stayed in his adoptive home and resolved to clear his name. Albalwi appeared to achieve his goal, with a stunning reversal in...