I didn't realize Federal law considered non-violent threats to be extortion.
But this still isn't going to count. The little shell companies have paperwork granting them the right to threaten to sue based on the patent, therefore they have the right to send you a letter threatening to sue. OTOH you do not have the right to a) file a false police report, or b) receive money in exchange for not reporting crimes. The difference between extortion and being a real hard-ass in negotiations is that an extorter would be breaking the law if he carried out his threats.
It's possible the 40-odd shell companies do not have the correct paper-work to sue based on these patents. It's equally possible they are misinterpreting the patent, or it was granted improperly. But since they don't actually file suit that never comes before the Courts, their right to sue is never challenged, and things like "extortion" simply don't come into play. They may be wrong, but they're idiots, not criminals, until a Judge rules against them.
That's why I love this case. It's pretty much the only way to get these trolls into court and figure out whether they are legally allowed to do this.