Arizona Man Sentenced For Blackmailing Georgia Tech Basketball Coach: Nearly Three Years in Prison

Ronald Bell, 57, of Oro Valley, Arizona, was sentenced for blackmailing the Georgia Tech Basketball coach, Josh Pastner, and for falsely accusing of sexual assault. He was given a two-and-a-half-year jail term on Thursday, to be followed by three years of supervised release.

Arizona Man Sentenced For Blackmailing Georgia Tech Basketball Coach: Nearly Three Years in Prison
Arizona Man Sentenced For Blackmailing Georgia Tech Basketball Coach: Nearly Three Years in Prison

Sentenced For Blackmailing The Georgia Tech Basketball Coach

A man from Arizona was sentenced for blackmailing Georgia Tech basketball coach and falsely accusing him for sexual assault, he was sentence of almost 3 years in prison, according to federal prosecutors. Given a sentence of two years and nine months in jail, followed by three years of supervised release. In March, Bell entered a plea of guilty to collaborating on the extortion plan with his co-defendant Jennifer Pendley and a Georgia Tech security guard.

In the previous year, according to the Attorney’s Office, Bell pressured Georgia Tech officials into dropping the assault claim in exchange for money. One of the suspects who got sentenced for blackmailing Georgia Tech basketball coach admitted to police that he had lied on the couple’s behalf in exchange for a promise of a share of the money being sought. It might be close to $20 million.

Ronald Bell and his girlfriend, Jennifer Pendley, were charged with participating in the fraud last year. They both entered guilty pleas to one felony count of conspiracy to commit extortion. It was not immediately clear if the security guard face charges in the case.

They Are Friends; What Happened?

The couple and Pastner were once friends, but since January 2018 they have been involved in litigation. It started when Pastner sued them for extortion and defamation. He claimed they made up claims that he violated NCAA regulations.

They countersued and claimed that Pastner had molested Pendley at Houston hotel in 2016 while he was Memphis’ head coach. An independent investigation by Georgia Tech last year found no support for the allegations of sexual assault.

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