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Stamos testifies in extortion trial of Mich. pair

The Associated Press, Tuesday, July 13, 2010, 7:43am (PDT)
  • MARQUETTE, Mich. (AP) -- Actor John Stamos testified Tuesday that he was "heartbroken" over the separation from his wife six years ago when he met a woman now charged with conspiring to extort $680,000 from him.

    The "Full House" and "ER" star took the stand during the federal trial of Allison Coss and Scott Sippola, who are accused of demanding money from Stamos, saying they had photos of him with cocaine and strippers they could sell to a magazine.

    Under questioning by prosecutors, Stamos said he met Coss in Orlando, Fla., in 2004 after he was taken there by friends trying to cheer him up after separating from his wife, actress and supermodel Rebecca Romijn.

    "I was very heartbroken at the time," he said.

    RELATED: Jury selection goes well in Stamos' case

    Stamos said he met Coss at Pleasure Island, a club where patrons must be at least 18. The 46-year-old Stamos said Coss told him she was on "college" spring break.

    Stamos said Coss and a friend were among several people who came to his hotel room and stayed for a couple hours. He described their time together as "just hanging out" and "socializing."

    He said he later began communicating with Coss via e-mail and described their conversations and "flirty" but "friendly."

    "It was all very sweet. I considered her a friend," Stamos said.

    Defense attorney Sarah Henderson had alleged that Coss met Stamos when she was 17 and that the two had a romantic fling, which his attorney denies.

    Henderson said during opening statements on Monday that two women who worked as strippers eventually showed up in Stamos' hotel room with a bag of cocaine, and Coss and her friend took a picture of Stamos bending over a table where the drugs had been laid out.

    RELATED: No teen fling for Stamos

    Henderson said Stamos and Coss later kissed on a bed and got into a hot tub together after Stamos undressed and Coss stripped to her underwear. She said Stamos offered to perform oral sex on Coss, but she declined. Florida law makes it a second-degree felony for someone 24 or older to have oral sex with anyone 16 or 17 years old.

    Stamos eventually became frustrated, broke a bedpost with his hand and left the room before apologizing and inviting Coss to spend the night, which she did, Henderson said.

    Stamos declined to comment to The Associated Press after Monday's opening statements. But his attorney, William Sobel, issued a statement through publicist Matt Polk denying the defense's claims.

    RELATED: Stamos wants a "Full House" movie

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