All About Extortion

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The act of extortion occurs when a person obtains property, money, or some other valuable asset from another person by using threats to scare the person into handing over the assets. Demanding some form of payment in return for not carrying out a threat is extortion. Any threat created to scare another person into taking actions to avoid the threat is a form of extortion.Extortion includes threats of physical harm, murder, or abduction. One example of a situation that may lead to extortion is the classic mafia example. The mafia is notorious for using extortion as a way they maintain dominance throughout the community where they exist. Many business owners are approached by men who offer some sort of protection in exchange for payment. Many times, the business owners respond with no interest in the offer, and this upsets the mafia.When the business owners turn down the offer of protection in exchange for payments, many times the mafia is known to make threats. The men from the mafia have been known to threaten business owners who do not buy the mafia’s protection. The threats consist of injury and destruction of the business if the owner does not accept the mafia as its protection service. These threats directed towards the business owner are a form of extortion. Threatening a business owner with injury or destruction if they do not accept the mafia’s protection is a crime that mob bosses are tried for time and again.Another classic example of a situation that leads to extortion is when a person is kidnapped and held hostage for ransom. Many times, kidnappers will contact the relatives of the kidnapped person, and request that money be exchanged for the safety and well being of the hostage. These threats to harm the hostage if payments are not made are another example of extortion.Also, any forms of coercion or intimidation to incite some action of payment is also considered extortion. Blackmail is another form of extortion that is not tolerated by law. Threatening to ruin someone’s reputation, marriage, or job through blackmail is highly illegal. If a person knows a secret about a prestigious community leader which might ruin that leader’s career if the secret was released, they would be committing extortion if they tried to force the leader to act a certain way in exchange for keeping the secret confidential. It is not illegal to release the secret, but if the person makes a threat to the leader with the possibility of revealing the secret, that is considered to be extortion. Even is there is no violence or crime involved, threatening to ruin someone’s reputation by releasing secret information also falls under the crime of extortion.Many different situations lead to extortion. Sometimes, a harmless threat or demand can turn into a much more serious situation if it is not dealt with legally. Even if a supervisor at a business threatens an employee into performing duties that are not part of the employee’s job, this is also a form of extortion. There are numerous situations that can lead to extortion, and although the crime of extortion sounds quite sinister, it takes place quite often. One situation where extortion takes place is through the use of bribery.Another example of extortion is the use of blackmail. Today, many people consider blackmail some form of mischief or even as a joke. When a person threatens another person into acting a certain way on behalf of exposing a confidential secret, that act is a crime. The information does not have to be criminal, just the threat to release information in expectation of certain actions is another form of extortion.