A man investigated in the alleged fondling of women seeking loans or movie roles has pleaded no contest to a charge of threatening a man and wife who failed to repay a $25,000 loan.

Paul Robert Rubey, 64, of Salt Lake City pleaded no contest Wednesday to collecting money by extortion. Sentencing is before U.S. District Judge J. Thomas Greene on Nov. 21."It was just a very stupid thing on my part," Rubey said. "I'm really going to clean up my act."

As part of the plea agreement, prosecutors will make no recommendation on a possible prison term. Because the threats occurred before new federal sentencing guidelines became effective, Rubey will not face a minimum mandatory prison term and could be placed on probation.

However, the judge could use Rubey's past criminal problems in determining his sentence, said federal prosecutor Richard Lambert.

In 1976, Rubey was convicted in Los Angeles of molesting an adolescent girl during a purported audition for a movie role. Police said a woman answered an ad placed by Rubey, and during the audition, the mother and the child disrobed and were fondled.

"The mother ought to have been jailed. She was doing everything she could to get her daughter in the movies," Rubey told a federal magistrate last February during a detention hearing following his Utah extortion arrest.

Salt Lake County detectives investigated allegations last year that Rubey fondled at least 10 women applying for loans from his now-defunct Private Investors Funding company or who went to him to audition for modeling or movie roles.

U.S. Magistrate Ronald Boyce called Rubey a "highly manipulative man" and ordered him to discontinue movie auditions while awaiting the outcome of legal proceedings in the extortion case.

Rubey promised the magistrate he wouldn't fondle women "if you don't want me to."