Two people who allegedly tried to extort money from Stevie Wonder were in court for the first time to face the charges against them yesterday.
Alpha L. Walker, 38, and Walker's girlfriend, Tamara Diaz, entered pleas of not guilty during their first court appearance in Los Angeles on Thursday.
Walker, who is a cousin to Wonder, is accused of trying to extort the Grammy-winning musician over a video they claimed would embarrass him.
Walker and Diaz were busted in May after they were set up in a police sting by officers who posed as Wonder's lawyers. The couple arrived to pick up a payment of $10,000 and were then arrested by the undercover police officers.
The video in question was a 80-minute diatribe directed against the Grammy-winning musician. According to witnesses at a pre-trial hearing, Mr. Walker's film made derogatory comments about Stevie Wonder's late mother and accused the musician of being "a slumlord".
Walker's lawyer said his client simply made a movie about his own life and his actions are protected by freedom of speech laws in the U.S.
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