Updating our Sept. 14, 2004 post: The California Supreme Court has ruled that Irish dancing impresario Michael Flatley (“Riverdance”, “Lord of the Dance”) can proceed with a suit against a woman who falsely accused him of rape and a lawyer who demanded money on the threat of proceeding with the accusation. “Lawyers for [Tyna Marie] Robertson and [D. Dean] Mauro argued that the lawsuit brought by Flatley should be thrown out because the letter was a settlement offer and was protected under the First Amendment. The state Supreme Court rejected the argument. ‘Mauro’s communications constituted criminal extortion as a matter of law and, as such, were unprotected by constitutional guarantees of free speech or petition,’ the six-member panel wrote.” (“Michael Flatley wins court ruling in extortion case”, AP/San Jose Mercury News, Jul. 27; “California court OKs Flatley’s extortion lawsuit”, AP/Chicago Sun-Times, Jul. 30).