The surfer, her stalker and his £2million plot to blackmail estranged wife: Man married to daughter of owner of major U.S. supermarket company admits trying to extort her and harassing two other women
- James Casbolt admitted blackmailing his estranged wife Haley Meijer
- Ms Meijer is daughter of US hypermarket CEO and billionaire Hank Meijer
- Casbolt, 37, also admitted stalking and sending threatening messages
- He has been remanded is custody for psychiatric report to be prepared
James Casbolt appeared in court yesterday to face claims that he targeted heiress Haley Meijer, whose father is US hypermarket tycoon Hank Meijer.
The 37-year-old was accused of sending threatening texts and emails containing pictures of his ex to her family and friends as well as posting images of her on the internet.
Casbolt, attempted to blackmail Haley Meijer, left, whose father is Hank Meijer, co-chairman of US hypermarket chain Meijers. He was also charged with harassing professional surfer Tassy Swallow, right, by sending offensive and threatening Facebook messages
He also admitted charges of harassing two other women with offensive Facebook messages – one of whom is former Great Britain junior surfer Anastassia Swallow.
Casbolt, who describes himself online as a ‘vastly unique individual’ entered the pleas at Truro Crown Court yesterday despite his legal team raising concerns about his mental ability.
Prosecutors claimed he sent threatening and offensive texts and emails as well as messages and images on social websites.
James Casbolt, pictured arriving at Truro Crown Court, has admitted blackmailing his wife Haley Meijer
He also admitted two charges of putting a person in fear of violence by harassment on September 20, which relate to surfer Miss Swallow and another woman, Simone Everett.
Both were said to have feared for their safety following threatening and offensive Facebook messages.
Casbolt, from St Ives, also approached Miss Swallow in the street on the same day.
Miss Swallow, 20, is a professional surfer from St Ives who represented her country four times as member of the junior British surf team.
In 2012 she was chosen as an Olympic torchbearer and took over the flame from sailor Ben Ainslie at Land’s End.
Earlier in the hearing, Jason Beal, representing Casbolt, asked for the case to be adjourned for the preparation of a psychiatric report, saying there were concerns about his fitness to plead.
Judge Simon Carr warned that if the case was adjourned, Casbolt would lose credit for an early guilty plea and there would have to be ‘something quite exceptional’ in the psychiatric report to convince him otherwise.
After a short adjournment, Casbolt pleaded guilty to all four counts on the indictment.
Casbolt, who has also admitted possessing cannabis, will be sentenced on February 3 and was remanded in custody while psychiatric reports are prepared.
An internet blog apparently written by Casbolt emerged yesterday in which he describes his past as ‘multidimensionally diverse and unmatched in terms of experience’.
Haley is the daughter of Hank Meijer (pictured) co-chairman of Michigan-based supermarket chain Meijer
Introducing himself as ‘Michael Prince, A.K.A. James Casbolt, he boasts of himself as ‘an extremely knowledgeable and vastly unique individual’ who has ‘lived an extraordinary life, with a past that reaches back far beyond birth into another time’.
It adds: ‘His unparalleled position, which comes from both bloodline and natural ability, gives him the opportunity to see more than the average researched intellectual, and connect more dots than even the most schooled historian.’
His wife’s father Hank Meijer is the chief executive and co-chairman of hypermarket chain Meijer and is said to be worth around £1.5billion.
The retailer, founded in 1934, boasts 204 stores across five states in the US and has made Hank and his brother Doug some of the richest in Michigan, where the company is based. According to Forbes, the pair are worth an estimated £5.5billion.
The family-owned chain was also 13th on Forbes’ 2011 list of America’s Largest Private Companies, and is now estimated to generate revenues of £9.7billion.
THE MEIJER FAMILY: THE 153RD RICHEST BILLIONAIRES IN THE WORLD
Haley is the daughter of billionaire Hank Meijer, co-chairman of supermarket chain Meijer (pictured)
Hank Meijer is the CEO and co-chairman of Michigan-based supermarket chain Maijer.
The company was founded in 1934 by his grandfather Hendrik, a Dutch immigrant, and father Frederik.
In 1962, it became one of the first stores in the US to offer one-stop shopping.
Frederik ran the company from 1964 until he handed control to his sons Hank and Doug, in 1990.
The private, family-owned retailer with 204 stores across five states does not disclose sales figures but has been estimated to have $15 billion in revenue.
It has made the brothers some of the richest in Michigan.
According to Forbes, Hank and Doug are worth an estimated $8.5 billion, ranking them as 153rd in the list of the world’s richest billionaires.
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