MACOMB, Mich. -- A mother is accused of extorting money from a wealthy and married businessman in order to keep the sexual text messages and voicemails they exchanged a secret.
The woman at the center of the scandal is 33-year-old Mirella Dzioba, of Michigan. Dzioba is a former model, real estate agent, and a mother of three children. She is accused of trying to get a 61-year-old businessman to pay her hundreds of thousands of dollars to keep quiet about texts and voicemails he left her that were sexual.
The news baffles Dzioba family friend Anthony Jablonski.
“Just her doing that, completely shocked me,” Jablonski. Jablonski worked with Dzioba’s husband. He said her husband tried to start his own construction company but failed. Dzioba’s new job as a real estate agent in Rochester kept them going.
“She seemed every time to love him so much and support everything that he did and he supported everything that she did. That they just seemed like the perfect couple,” said Jablonski.
The federal affidavit only describes the man Dzioba tried to blackmail as a wealthy Detroit businessman.
The businessman met Dzioba in July after closing on a property. Afterward, the two went for a drink. That’s when Dzioba told the businessman she enjoyed “strong” men speaking to her in a sexual manner. She also encouraged him to leave her voicemails that were sexual. The two went on a second date and she sent him “suggestive” photographs.
According to the affidavit, Dzioba started asking the businessman to pay for things like a computer and a real estate class or she would go to his wife. The man went to her real estate office and paid her off with $1,400 dollars. When Dzioba asked for $250,000 dollars he retained an attorney. When the attorney did not scare Dzioba off, the man called authorities.
The whole thing is still confusing to friends who know the family.
“You don’t know why people do things. Something might’ve happened, for some reason, and uh, that’s all there is to it,” said Jablonski.
The FBI said they have video of Dzioba accepting payment from the businessman as payoff in the parking lot of the real estate office where she worked in Rochester.
The FBI arrested Dzioba on extortion charges. She has been released and will go before a judge in federal court at the end of the month.