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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71050
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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The owner of several car wash centres that use poor immigrants to work, was contacted by a

Customer Question

The owner of several car wash centres that use poor immigrants to work, was contacted by a friend of mine that does cleaning, if he has some work for him and he gave him some flyers to put them into mailboxes. He left with the boss' wife to distribute some leaflets. Some leaflets could not be put in the mailbox due to locked gates and were left on the pavement behind the gate inside the yard where the others where. This was seen by the boss' wife that looked very unhappy and took him back to head office, where they took his phone and bicycle and asked for £800 for failing to put 7-8 leaflets in the mailbox and leaving them down. Under death threat they took his phone's password ***** accessed personal data and threatened him that if he does not give them £800 in 3-4 days they'll find him and kill him. He suffered such emotional shock that instantly he had a nosebleed. How much should he demand as compensation for theft, blackmail, death threats, personal data violation?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Sorry, but from whom is he hoping to claim compensation?
Is he suing?
What is his financial loss?
Can he pay the court fees?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

He is hoping to claim compensation from the man and wife that threatened him that at the moment are in police custody. The police has taken the case as it is criminal offence and the prosecutor said he does not need a lawyer. The prosecutor has evidence of for offences: blackmail, theft, personal data violation and death threat. All this is recorded on camera and police has it.

We only need a second opinion in how much he would be able to claim.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
He cannot claim in the course of a criminal prosecution.
The court would consider compensation but it would probably be about £100 as these offences just don't really cause actual financial loss. A sentencing Judge might well say it is a matter for civil courts anyway and that is always supposing they are convicted. They are certainly not going to be convicted of making threats to kill as it is almost never charged and even more rarely convicted. There is a lesser public order offence that can be used which is easier to prove but obviously less serious.
He could sue independently but he will have to pay for the action and there is no clear financial loss for which to claim so it is risky. It is an option but he should be aware of the risk.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

They have taken his phone by force and by death threat managed to get his password. They have also taken his bike and threaten him with death again if he does not bring them £800 in 3-4 days. So, for that they wont be convicted? Also, after being shocked in such a way and thinking he's going to die, he wont be able to get any compensation for emotional distress?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Because it isn't as simple as showing a death threat.
They won't be charged with threats to kill or if they are it will be removed in favour of S4. I have only ever seen it once and that involved a case where a person was taken to a wood and forced to start digging his own grave over a drugs dispute and even he was acquitted.
There is a lesser public order offence that is much easier to prove that will be relied upon.
He could sue for pain and suffering but that is not highly awarded in the UK. It is a claim usually consequent upon other personal injury or damage to property or destruction.
The criminal courts would consider compensation but you don't make demands over the amount. The criminal court arrives at an amount and awards it if indeed there is a conviction.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
On the face of it, I would have thought blackmail was the better charge.