But many states (maybe even a majority) have an exception to the "crime" of extortion if:
"the property obtained by threat of the accusation, exposure, lawsuit or other invocation of official action was lawfully claimed either as:
1. Restitution or indemnification for harm done under circumstances to which the accusation, exposure, lawsuit or other official action relates.
2. Compensation for property that was lawfully obtained or for lawful services."
That's a quote from Arizona Revised Statute 13-804:
And is similar to many other state criminal statutes that I've found in the last few years thanks to an ongoing debate that I've had on another website.
I'll leave it to somebody else to look up California's extortion statute.