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'Cliffe Scholar Faces Charge of Extortion


A Radcliffe Institute scholar was arraigned in Concord, N.H. on Dec. 24 on a charge of using the mails to try to extort $50,000 from a retired New Hampshire businessman.

The indictment, returned secretly on Dec. 17, accused Mrs. Eva Berczeller, 43, of Belmont, Mass. of writing and mailing an unsigned, typewritten letter to Julius Sklar, 53, of Claremont, N.H. demanding $50,000 for certain photographs and other material.

The letter said, "If you tell anything about this letter to your girl friend, I shall see to it that she will be part of a countrywide scandal as I shall not spare any effort to destroy her."

Authorities say the "girl friend" was the author of the letter.

The letter mentioned a set of negatives taken at the White River Junction, Vt., bus terminal on Nov. 9 and at the Continental Hotel in Cambridge on Nov. 26.

The defendant was accused of demanding the $50,000 to be paid in $20 bills by Dec. 4.

Radcliffe Institute scholars are chosen yearly to work independently at Harvard. They are given Corporation appointments.

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