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New York Extortion Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Extortion?

Like embezzlement and false pretenses, extortion is a type of larceny- which is theft. Larceny by extortion involves wrongfully obtaining property by creating fear that if the person does not comply with the demand for property, he or she will be injured or their property will be damaged. Examples of the type of threats used in extortion include:

  • To physically harm to someone
  • To damage property
  • To engage in some type of criminal conduct
  • To accuse someone of a crime
  • To ruin someone’s reputation by exposing a secret, or releasing information that may or may not be fact
  • To cause a strike or boycott
  • To testify or withhold testimony in a legal action
  • To use or abuse position as a public servant by performing or failing to perform an act related to his or her official duties
  • To perform any other act which is calculated to harm another person

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What Is the Difference Between Extortion and Robbery?

Both extortion and robbery are types of theft. The difference is that with extortion the threats need not be of immediate harm, while with robbery, the threat is immediate. For example, if Henry walks up to Sheila in an alley, pulls out a gun and threatens to shoot her if she does not turn over her purse, phone, and jewelry, Henry would have committed a robbery. If Henry meets Sheila in a coffee shop and tells her that if she does not deposit $2500 in his bank account in a week, he will tell her husband about an affair that she had years ago, Henry would have committed extortion. In both cases Henry committed theft.

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What Are Possible Penalties for an Extortion Conviction?

While larceny can be a misdemeanor or a felony, if the larceny is by extortion, the charge would be a felony. If convicted, the sentence may include:

  • Incarceration
  • Fines
  • Restitution to the victim

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Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

If you are under investigation for extortion or any other type of larceny in New York, it is important that you have experienced representation. The skilled criminal attorneys at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates have more than 2 decades of experience representing clients in New York criminal courts charged with felonies and misdemeanors, including offenses related to theft. We have the skill and resources to make sure your legal rights are protected. Contact us at 800.NY.NY.LAW (800.696.9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: Nassau County, Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Staten Island, Suffolk County, Queens, Manhattan, and Westchester County.

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