LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Southern California gallery owner has been sentenced to five years in federal prison for harassing, threatening and trying to extort money from artists, art dealers and their family members.
The U.S. attorney’s office says 43-year-old Jason White of Temecula received the sentence Monday after pleading guilty in March to two federal stalking counts.
U.S. District Judge Steven V. Wilson who handed down the sentence called White’s crimes “horrendous” and “very disturbing.”
Prosecutors say White targeted former associates in the art world, posting derogatory information on websites and demanding hundreds of thousands of dollars to take them down.
They say he once texted an art publisher saying he would bring her “fear, anguish and pain” and sent her pictures of her child with comments including “it will be very unfortunate if something was to happen to him.”
(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)