Attorney accused in extortion scheme with former state attorney convicted at trial

Exterior of the U.S. District Courthouse in Jacksonville.
Exterior of the U.S. District Courthouse in Jacksonville.(U.S. District Court -- Middle District of Florida)
Published: Jun. 24, 2022 at 4:34 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - An attorney accused in an extortion scheme that led to the indictment of former North Florida State Attorney Jeff Siegmeister has now been convicted at trial.

Federal court records show Marion Michael O’Steen, a defense attorney from Dixie County, was found guilty last week of extortion and failing to report receiving more than $10,000 in cash. He was found not guilty on two other charges.

O’Steen was found guilty of extorting $60,000 in cash from a client accused of maintaining a gambling house, U.S. Attorney Roger B. Handberg announced this week.

A release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office says O’Steen told his client that in exchange for the payment, he would use up a “favor” with the state attorney to make “everything go away.”

O’Steen was arrested as part of an FBI investigation into claims of bribery and extortion within the Third Judicial Circuit State Attorney’s Office. That office handles cases in seven Big Bend counties: Columbia, Dixie, Hamilton, Lafayette, Madison, Suwannee and Taylor.

Former State Attorney Jeff Siegmeister resigned in 2019. He was later indicted, arrested, and ultimately pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy, extortion, and fraud earlier this year.

Both Siegmeister and O’Steen and are scheduled to be sentenced in Jacksonville’s federal courthouse on Oct. 12, 2022.

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