Investigation opened in Crawford extort probe

November 16, 2009 8:57:59 AM PST
Prosecutors say they are opening an investigation against a German man suspected of trying to extort money from former supermodel Cindy Crawford and her family in the United States.

Claudia Krauth, a spokeswoman for the Stuttgart prosecutor's office, said Monday investigators are trying to determine if there is enough evidence to arrest Edis Kayalar, who is currently vacationing in Turkey.

The 26-year-old has been charged in the U.S. with trying to extort $100,000 (euro67,258) from Crawford and her entrepreneur husband Rande Gerber by threatening to release a photo of their daughter bound to a chair and gagged when she was 7.

According to court papers, the girl says a former nanny took the picture as part of a "cops and robbers" game, and Kayalar obtained it. Kayalar was deported from the U.S. three months ago for an immigration violation.

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