Man jailed for blackmailing men he met on Grindr by threatening to leak explicit photos
A man has been sentenced to two years and four months in prison for blackmailing men he met on Grindr.
Patryk Hrymak spoke to his victims on Grindr before moving to other online messaging platforms where they could exchange nude photos.
He gave the men the impression that he wanted to meet up with them in person but, before that, he would need them to confirm their identities by providing social media details.
Once he had received the photos from the men, he would threaten to leak them to their contacts through social media unless they paid him a sum of money.
Patryk Hrymak was found guilty of eight counts of blackmailing men he met on Grindr.
He was given his sentence during an appearance at Croydon Crown Court on Tuesday, August 20. He was found guilty of eight counts of blackmail and two counts of disclosing photographs and films with intent to cause distress.
The 27-year-old shared photos of the men with others in six of the eight cases. One of the men paid him £120 to stop him from leaking his nude photos.
I hope that the sentence handed down brings a measure of closure for the victims.
Most of the victims blocked Hrymak and reported him to police when he attempted to blackmail them.
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Hrymak was arrested at his home on November 14 2018 and later pleaded guilty to all charges.
He had reportedly accrued £7,500 of debt.
Detective constable Keval Varia, who investigated the case, said: “The victims in this case were contacted via a male only dating app, however anyone using any form of online dating service, should be wary of sending intimate photographs of themselves. Think carefully about what you share with people online.
“I hope that the sentence handed down brings a measure of closure for the victims.”
The Evening Standard reports that Hrymak began blackmailing men because he had accrued £7,500 debt from a cannabis habit.
During his sentencing on Tuesday, Judge Deborah Charles said: “This has had a significant impact on your victims and blackmail is regarded as a nasty offence. As a man who says he was bullied over his sexuality as a youth, you were well-placed to appreciate the consequences of gay men being ‘outed’ when it was not something they wanted to do.”