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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71159
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Working on a novel, just need to know, if someone is

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Hello, working on a novel, just need to know, if someone is blackmailing someone into sex, can the blackmailer be sent to prison for blackmail on the grounds that the victim is suffering a financial loss if, for example, the victim has to take a day off work to allow the sex to happen, or has to pay for a hotel room or travel costs? Thanks! I refer to "Theft Act 1968 defines 'gain' and 'loss' as including only gain or loss of money or other property. This would exclude from the remit of blackmail demands of a sexual nature. However, generally property of some kind can be found to exist"
Really grateful if you can give a quick answer to this question (just need a general idea as it's only for a novel and nothing is actually at stake here)
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
No, sex is not a financial loss or property. Having to take a day off work isn't really made out as they do not and travelling would take place anyway.
The case law is fairly clear on the point I'm afraid.
There may be other offences that do apply but blackmail does not.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I get that sex isn't property or financial directly, my question is about this concept that 'However, generally property of some kind can be found to exist'. If the sex COSTS THE VICTIM MONEY in travel to the blackmailers's house, or if the victim has to pay for a hotel room, does it then fall under the blackmail law? In this case, the blackmail ISN'T GAINING financially, but the victim IS LOSING financially. Does that count as blackmail? Or does the blackmailer have to gain the money? I mean, if the victim is paying for a hotel for example, the VICTIM IS LOSING MONEY, but it is THE HOTEL OWNER WHO GAINS MONEY, not the blackmailer. How does that fit in with the blackmail law?Thanks!
No, because that isn't the subject of the demand.
This has been fairly heavily considered by the cases I'm afraid.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
OK, please just clarify one final time and I'll leave EXCELLENT (five star) feedback as I want to be sure that I understand:So the financial/property loss has to be PART OF WHAT IS BEING DEMANDED DIRECTLY, yes? Sure, the victim is LOSING MONEY (travel costs, hotel), but that is not relevant because THE BLACKMAILER WAS NOT DEMANDING THAT THE VICTIM PAY FOR A HOTEL, THE BLACKMAILER WAS DEMANDING SEX.So, the blackmailer CANNOT BE JAILED FOR BLACKMAILING THE VICTIM INTO SEX in this case -- even though the victim pays for travel/and or hotel room?Is all of the above correct?Thanks!
Yes, basically.
The DEMAND has to be for money or property. The fact that delivering the demand cost money is a non issue.
If the demand were that a person pays for a hotel room then that would be different but that isn't usually the subject of the demand.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
So in fact it depends on quite what the blackmailer demands.If the blackmail literally just demands that SEX TAKES PLACE, then it's NOT blackmail.If the blackmailer messes up and says, 'You have to pay for the room', then they CAN go to prison for blackmail.This really is the last clarification. If the above is correct, then I full understand your answer!
Yes, exactly.
To use an example from a case I once had. If a prisoner takes another prisoner hostage and delivers a list of demands including one request for removal to a different prison and another for cigarettes, he is guilty of blackmail but only because he asked for cigarettes which are property.
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