Extortion Muslim Lawyer in New York
Extortion is when a person obtains a service, property, money from a person, institution through coercion. Extortion is punishable at the state level and by federal law which means it's a severe crime. Ideally, if someone asks for money in exchange for protection, the act is known as extortion. Moreover, if the crime is commissioned through the internet or a computer, it becomes a Federal crime because it breaches the interstate commerce statute.
Extortion vs. coercion
A layman often confuses extortion with coercion. But, the two crimes are different as stated in the New York penal law under section 155.05(2)(e) and 135.60. To start with, extortion is obtaining something from someone in return for protection or prevention to harm. On the other hand, coercion is manipulating someone's action. If anyone manipulates another to do something that the victim would have legally refused, the act becomes coercion.
Extortion vs. blackmail
Each state defines extortion and blackmail differently. But, in New York, the two terms describe grand larceny in the second degree or the fourth degree depending on how the crime is accomplished. Therefore, the two words describing the crime of obtaining something from someone in exchange for something they value are punishable by law and jail time in a state’s prison. Blackmail is a form of extortion as it involves a threat to expose embarrassing information about the victim. Essentially, extortion or blackmail is covered under Penal Law and United States Code and thus punishable at the level of state and federal.
Elements of Extortion
The first characteristic of extortion is threats either verbally or non-verbally. The person conducting extortion must show an intention to cause harm or commit injury to the victim. For example, an offender can claim to disclose shameful acts of the victim, report the victim to immigration authority or accuse them of a crime if the victim fails to do as the offender wants. The mere fact that the offender is making a threat is enough to classify his/her act as extortion.
If the offender makes a threat with the intent to obtain property, money or service from the victim, it completes the act of extortion. However, the prosecutor does not have to prove that the offender intended to extort something from the victim. Instead, the prosecutor can prove the intention of the offender based on the circumstances surrounding the offense.
The threat instilled in a victim leads to fear. However, the prosecutor doesn't have to prove that the offender instilled fear to the victim for them to hand over their property or money. It is important to note that the victim doesn't have to necessarily experience fear. Considering that the victim might fear for economic loss, violence, stigma, and deportation to hand over their property or money, it is enough reason to qualify the crime as extortion.
Property is something you own whether money or a house. But, the property is also a liquor license, agreements, or a debt. Therefore, if the offender wants to extort of you of any property, the act becomes extortion.
Examples of extortion
Extortion statutes require that there must be an offender and a victim whose property could be taken by the offender through threats. Also, if there is a threat against family member the extortion applies. The statute also provides that if the threat against the victim's business and career the acts becomes extortion.
Besides the traditional extortion that happens physically, cyber extortion is also common. First, cybercriminals use ransomware software to encrypt a person’s important data and use it to extort something from the victim, failure to which could lead to leaking the information.
Defenses to Extortion
Extortion is a complex crime to defend, especially if there is evidence in writing. But, if the threat was verbal, then your defense claim the threat was never made. The defense investigates reasons to discredit the accuser’s motivation.
Another defense is claiming that the threat was not the reason why the victim transferred their property to the offender. It might be challenging to prove it, but with the help of a good lawyer, the defense can work for you.
Penalties for Extortion
There is a vast range of penalties for extortion. However, extortion is commonly charged as a felony offense. But, the crime is also charged as a misdemeanor in some cases and thus attracts fewer fines or jail time. Here are some of the penalties an offender can face if sued with extortion.
Fines could range from $10,000 for each conviction depending on the severity.
If the extortion did not succeed in acquiring property, the offender might be charged and sentenced with probation. The probation could last up to 12 months and the offender may have to pay a fine as well. Also, the offender is expected to abide by the terms of the probation failure to which the probation could be overruled and the offender sent to prison.
Fines are paid to court but restitution is compensation to a victim. Therefore, besides paying fines, the offender might also have to pay restitution.
The offender could face 15 years in prison considering extortion is a significant crime.
Extortion is a serious crime as it is punishable at the state and federal levels. It is therefore important to seek legal advice immediately a complaint is filed against you. Your lawyer will help you investigate evidence surrounding your case and prepare the best defense. Moreover, the lawyer will ensure your rights are observed and try and plea for more lenient penalties.
The licensed Muslim lawyer Farrukh Nuridinov is an attorney who is willing to fight for his clients freedom by using his wide range of criminal defense strategies. All you should do to get one of the best defenses in New York is to contact us via our telephone: +(1) 347-763-93-96