Man jailed for blackmail after threatening to leak nude photos of men he met on Grindr
A man has been jailed for two years after threatening to share intimate photos he had been sent by men he met on Grindr.
Leicester Crown Court heard how Mohamed Mohamed, a 22-year-old student, would meet his victims on Grindr before swapping intimate photos with them on WhatsApp.
He would then threaten to share the images with friends and co-workers and, in two cases, attempted to extort money from his victims, according to LeicestershireLive.
A judge said that Mohamed’s actions displayed “elements of sadism and power play”, dismissing his claim that he had lashed out during a time of “emotional difficulty” in terms of his own sexuality.
Blackmailer threatened to leak married man’s photos.
The court was told how in one exchange, Mohamed began speaking to a man on Grindr who had told him he had a husband.
After he received seven explicit images from the man, Mohamed asked him: “How do you think your husband would feel once I show him all the pictures you’ve sent me and tell him about your intentions to cheat and do you think [your employer] would fire you once I email it to them too?”
Mohamed claimed to have “done his homework” on the victim, his friends and family, and said he had befriended his husband.
Referring to one of the man’s friends by name, he said: “What would [name redacted] think? Hasn’t she been friends with your husband for decades? Do you think he’ll divorce you?”
I’ll be here ruining your life.
He added: “I’ll be here ruining your life. Your career will be over. And I’ll laugh.”
The victim told police that he felt compelled to warn his employer and his partner that he was being threatened.
Prosecutor Steven Taylor told Leicester Crown Court: “He was worried his indiscretion might be made known to his partner and other people who hold him in high regard.”
Mohamed said he would out victim.
Mohamed blackmailed another man over the course of seven months, after the victim sent him a sexualised video.
He first demanded that the man send him payment “not to post [the] vids” in September 2017. In March of the following year he continued the threat, saying: “After I post it everyone will know you’re gay, do you want that to happen?”
After being told: “Either get to know me or leave me alone,” Mohamed again threatened to share their exchanges with the victim’s colleagues, at which point the victim blocked him.
Student wanted £150 not to leak explicit video.
A third victim, who worked in theatre production, sent five nude photos to Mohamed before arranging to meet him in a hotel in March 2018.
Mohamed failed to show and instead told him in a WhatsApp message: “I want you to PayPal me £150 or I will send these pictures to the entire cast and crew along with the press.”
After the victim blocked him, Mohamed began to text him and threatened to share the images with his housemate and with an old school friend, who he referred to by name.
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Grindr victims ‘must have felt thoroughly threatened’.
Mohamed, from Humberstone, Leicester, admitted two counts of blackmail by demanding money with menace and one of sending a communication with intent to cause distress and anxiety.
He claimed that the third victim had sent him abuse when he didn’t show at the hotel, but did not present any evidence to support that.
The prosecutor added: “It doesn’t really explain why the defendant went on to behave similarly to two others in the same week.”
Anthony Rimmer, mitigating, said that Mohamed had no intention of carrying out his threats, and was struggling with his own sexuality at the time.
Recorder Helen Malcom QC said that Mohamed’s actions had shown “elements of sadism and power play”.
“The victims in your case must have felt thoroughly threatened,” Malcom said.
Referring to his defence, she added: “If it was as a result of coming to terms with your sexuality you went about it in the wrong way.”