Etowah Judge Acquits Two Lawyers, Man on Extortion Charges

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

GADSDEN, Ala. (AP) -- An Etowah County judge has acquitted two lawyers and a third man on trial on extortion charges.

Circuit Judge Howard F. Bryan IV ruled Wednesday there was insufficient evidence to continue the trial of Gadsden attorney Frank Bailey; Coosa County Assistant District Attorney Frank Teel; and Teel's son, Ryan McVay Teel.

Reports suggest the ruling means the men can't be retried on charges first brought in 2010.

Prosecutors say the men were arrested after they allegedly tried to extort $5 million from a Gadsden businessman with the threat of a capital murder indictment to settle a civil lawsuit against him.

Defense lawyers argued that prosecutors failed to prove the men committed a crime, and the judge agreed.

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