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Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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A friend received a text. There was abuse 'vile old man',

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A friend received a text. There was abuse 'vile old man', 'c**t'; a threat of violence 'I will kick your impotent dick in'; a reminder 'don't forget I know for how many years you haven't paid tax'.
The sender of the text had been put up for the best part of two years rent free by the recipient of the text. She had first claimed she would only need to stay a few weeks till she had found new accommodation.
The receiver of the text runs a small independent charity shop. The sender of the text had stored a bag of clothes in the back room of the shop. This bag was lost. The sender claims that she is owed £200 for the value of the clothes by the friend who put her up in the first place. The text is to support her claim. The receiver of the text who is in his seventies has paid the £200 already. The sender also came with another friend while the shop was open and this friend also assaulted a worker to scare the old gentleman into staying where he was and not attempt to escape.
Is this blackmail?

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you

Thanks for the history, what is it you want to achieve?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Before reporting to the police I would like, if possible, to know what offence has been committed by the sender of the text, if any? What would the consequences be for my friend vis-a-vis HMRC? When should an approach to them be made? Tax is owing. Regardless I am not inclined to dismiss the actions of the texter as I suspect there may be further claims.

Is this person asking for more money?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
As yet no. But there are stories that this is not the first time she has used such tactics. So while there is no evidence it is felt she has yet to find how low she can go.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I understand that there is a significant difference in law and severity between harassment and abuse on the one hand and blackmail on the other in support of, what would look to any reasonable person, a totally spurious claim for recompense. I would like at least an indication that I am not completely wrong in thinking that a line may have been crossed.

Yes - blackmail is demanding money with threats of violence generally. Therefore in this case there has been no demand for money so I dont think its blackmail.

It would be harassment where one party pursues a course of conduct which he knows or ought to know would amount to alarm, harassment or distress.

Clearly if someone hasnt paid tax, you cant stop them reporting to HMRC.

But if they have been threatened it should be reported to the Police to investigate.

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
There was a verbal demand for money before the text was sent, but nothing written. I should have clarified that earlier.

OK - but that was as a result of the missing items?
If not, then it is blackmail. If there is no money there will be violence, this should be reported to the Police.

Does that clarify? Alex

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
she has a real claim to compensation for missing items after being housed rent free? Are the items not her responsibility? There was no agreement to store items for her. I am now confused.

If there was no agreement then she should have been given 30 days notice to get them removed. If she was storing them then it is her duty to take care of them sadly.

Does that clarify? Alex

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She moved in 'for a few weeks' stayed 18 months, brought bags with her, stored one in the back of a shop amongst other bags of clothes. This was simply tolerated in the hope she would be gone soon - as you do with so-called friends. There was no landlord/tenant relationship. She was staying with my friend and keeping her things in his shop. Given your 'sadly', I think I was right the first time. Many thanks.

Yes that is correct.

Can I clarify anything else for you please?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
That is all very valuable. I need nothing further today. Have a good day. Roy.

If this answers your question could I invite you to rate my answer before you go today Roy, otherwise the site doesn’t pay me for the time spent with you. Thanks in advance! Alex

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