Florida woman accused of extorting married doctor she met online

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A sheriff's office worker in Florida is accused of shaking down a doctor she met online. (WPVI)

A sheriff's office worker in Florida is accused of shaking down a doctor she met online.

Now she's charged with extortion for threatening to tell the man's wife, unless he paid her credit card bill.

The tryst began online, but ended in court.

The trusted sheriff's office employee is now on trial for allegedly trying to extort a prominent South Florida doctor she met on Ashley Madison - the self-proclaimed "most successful website for finding an affair."

According to court documents, 48-year-old Debbie O'Flaherty-Lewis used the name "Discreet Fun" to start chatting with the married father of four in 2013.

The pair eventually had a one night stand but when she texted him hours later he suggested they not see each other for a while.

"His response was 'I don't think we should see each other for a while' and according to him at that point she became enraged," said Rafael Olmeda, reporter for the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

O'Flaherty-Lewis allegedly then used her resources with the Broward County Sheriff's Office to track down information about the doctor's family, collecting his children's names and birth dates.

The doctor says O'Flaherty-Lewis - a mother herself - then threatened to tell his wife about their relationship unless he paid off her $7,000 credit card debt.

But the doctor instead went to the very same police officer's O'Flaherty-Lewis works with to help set up a sting operation.

Her attorney, Gerald Kuchinsky, claims the allegations are false.

"The actions of the defendant had to be malicious," says Kuchinsky.

This story is adding fuel to the already controversial fire surrounding Ashley Madison and its 35 million customers.

ABC News sat down with the company's CEO and asked if they are encouraging secrecy.

"Yes," said CEO Noel Biderman. "But I'm not necessarily encouraging infidelity."

Ashley Madison is also quick to point out that it's not "responsible for any damage or harm" from the use of its service.
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