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My legal matter concerning an application for a Domestic Violence Order was managed by Mr Thomas Allen. I am grateful for the outcome he obtained. Without Mr Allen and his ongoing support, I would be certain of a different result. It has been an extremely stressful period. Mr Allen’s astute ability to liaise on my behalf and his expertise was invaluable and for which I am grateful as I am now able to move forward. Thanking you
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Armstrong Legal and specifically Mr Thomas Allen for representing me in my recent case. At the outset, I would like to thank Mr Allen for the very professional delivery of his legal service. From the first time that I met Mr Allen, I was very impressed with his demeanour and delivery as he made me feel at ease knowing the severity of my case. Mr Allen not only gave me the possible positive outcomes of the case but also the realisation of the worst-case scenario as far as sentencing goes. … I will certainly be recommending Armstrong Legal to any of my friends or family needing representation in criminal matters. Thank you so very much.
Thank you for your representation and help. Fingers crossed for the next step and parole. I just want to say that from the first phone call to your office, your service has been outstanding and have put my mind at ease. I am glad I picked your number to ring.
Thank you Armstrong Legal, the lawyers that have helped over the past 3 years but more importantly, thank you to Thomas Allen for the major part you and Mr Buckland played. Cannot thank you enough. Cheers.
Hi all. I would like to thank Ms Lisa Riley for all her help with my legal issues this past month. It was the most harrowing experience of my life and thanks to her expertise, professionalism and knowledge of the law, I came out almost unscathed. I have no hesitation in recommending Lisa Riley and Armstrong Legal if you need help. The service is amazing and the cost was very minimal for the great outcome. Thank you Lisa for helping me in the most difficult time.
I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. My whole life I was thrown away, you made me feel like I did mean something. I could not have asked for a better lawyer. Your compassion and love for your job is inspiring. Your upfront and honesty were muchly appreciated, you are a beautiful person. Thank you for not giving up on me and thank you for all the work you put in. I wish you all the best for the future and I will be recommending you to everyone I know. You're amazing!!!!
I just wanted to thank you for representing me on Monday, I was overjoyed & relieved with the outcome. I don’t think it could have gone any better. All the best, I hope you got to celebrate this one instead after work, you forever made a difference in my life.
I know I thanked you before we parted company but please allow me to reiterate in writing my sincere deepest thanks for defending me in court today. … Armstrong Legal certainly has a great Lawyer you are a credit to the company and I'm quite sure you will secure a very successful future! … My Kindest Regards and Thanks
Throughout Angela has been the consummate professional. She maintained a calm, yet strong demeanour remained informative and completely open in her communication and took complete ownership of the situation. We felt confident we finally had an advocate to steer us out of the nightmare we were in, and she did so with great respect and sincerity. I cannot speak more highly of Angela. She has literally rescued our family from what looked very much like a hopeless future.
Words can’t describe how grateful I am to Trudie Cameron being my solicitor and to Andrew Tiedt presenting my case in the court. They both have been very supportive and amazingly professional and effective. I’ve got an absolutely fantastic outcome I couldn’t even dream about.
Soon after meeting Andrew I knew he was the solicitor I wanted to handle my matter. He immediately sprang into action which brought me stability and hope during a tumultuous time in my life. Andrew was never afraid to give me straight answers to my tough questions which is a true mark of integrity. He is clearly at ease in the court environment and I believe his calm and measured demeanour went a long way to helping me secure the best result from my day in court. I would certainly recommend you approach Andrew if you need assistance.
"Andrew Tiedt was very professional and considerate to personal circumstances and gave sound advice that resulted in the best outcome possible. Highly recommended."
The offence of blackmail is committed when one person makes a demand on another person for specified property, and that demand is accompanied by threat or force. Blackmail in Western Australia is covered by extortion offences in the Criminal Code Act Compilation Act 1913 (“Criminal Code”).
Section 397 makes it an offence to demand property with threats to extort or gain. A person will be guilty of the crime if they to blackmail someone by demanding, in writing or orally, that something be procured or something be done or not done, under threat of injury or detriment of any kind if the demand is not complied with.
“Writing” includes any recording made on a device by which words or sounds are recorded and capable of being reproduced, such as a mobile phone.
The maximum penalty is imprisonment for 14 years.
Section 398 makes it an offence to use threats with an intent to extort. A person will be guilty of the crime if they accuse, or threaten, or offer to threaten to accuse, someone of committing an indictable offence.
The maximum penalty is imprisonment for 14 years. The penalty increases to 20 years if the accusation or threat of accusation is of:
- an offence that carries a penalty of life imprisonment;
- sexual offences or certain offences against morality such indecent acts;
- an indecent assault;
- a solicitation or threat offered to someone to induce them to commit or allow any of the above offences.
“Threat” is defined as a statement or behaviour that expressly constitutes, or could reasonably be regarded as constituting a threat to:
- kill, injure, endanger or harm a person, whether a particular person or not;
- destroy, damage, endanger or harm any property, whether particular property or not;
- take or exercise control of a building, structure or conveyance by force or violence;
- cause a detriment of any kind to a person, whether a particular person or not;
- distribute an intimate image of any person.
What actions might constitute blackmail?
A person can be convicted of blackmail even if the threat was never carried out. The issue is whether there was an intention to extort someone by using a threat.
The threat can be express or implied. It can be made without the use of words, but implied via body language or gestures.
Examples of blackmail include:
- a person demanding access to children under the threat of violence;
- a person demanding money in exchange for not publishing confidential information about another person;
- a person threatening to poison an ex-partner’s pet if the ex-partner does not agree to resume the relationship.
Questions will be asked from an objective point of view, with the court considering whether a person of “reasonable firmness and courage” would have considered the conduct to be a threat.
In 2020 a 25-year-old West Australian man was charged with extortion after allegedly pretending to be a teenage social media celebrity to blackmail girls online into performing sex acts.
He was remanded in custody on 312 charges relating to 285 alleged victims in Australia and overseas. The victims were believed to be as young as 11, and police were working with Interpol and social media companies to identify the victims.
He allegedly asked sexually explicit questions and edited written chat to change answers given by his victims. He allegedly then threatened to send the doctored chats to the victims’ friends and family if the girls refused to provide nude photographs or perform sex acts live on camera. This sexually explicit behaviour was recorded and the man would then threaten to release the footage unless more sex acts was performed.
Possible defences to blackmail
The accused person could argue that:
- their actions did not constitute a threat;
- they did not intend to extort someone;
- they acted out of necessity or self-defence;
- they were forced to blackmail someone because they were under duress from another party.
Possible penalties for blackmail
Apart from the penalties listed in sections 397 and 398, a court can impose penalties including:
- a fine;
- a Community-Based Order;
- a suspended sentence;
- an Intensive Correction Order;
- home detention.
If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter, please call Armstrong Legal.
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