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in law, unlawful demanding or receiving by an officer, in his official capacity, of any property or money not legally due to him. Examples include requesting and accepting fees in excess of those allowed to him by statute or arresting a person and, with corrupt motives, demanding money or property unlawfully under pretense of duty. The taking of money or property is generally an essential element of the crime. In most states of the United States, extortion is more widely defined to include the obtaining of money or property of another by inducing his consent through wrongful use of fear, force, or authority of office; blackmailblackmail,
in law, exaction of money from another by threat of exposure of criminal action or of disreputable conduct. The term was originally used for the tribute levied until the 18th cent.
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, ransomransom,
price of redemption demanded by the captor of a person, vessel, or city. In ancient times cities frequently paid ransom to prevent their plundering by captors. The custom of ransoming was formerly sanctioned by law.
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, and threatthreat,
in law, declaration of intent to injure another by doing an unlawful act, with a view to restraining his freedom of action. A threat is distinguishable from an assault, for an assault requires some physical act that appears likely to eventuate in violence, whereas a
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 of force are included under this definition.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



in criminal law, a crime against property consisting of the demand to turn over property, or the rights to property, under threat of violence to the individual who controls or guards the property or to persons close to him, as well as under threat of making public damaging information about him or destroying the property. In this case, persons close to the owner include not only relatives but also other citizens who, threatened by violence, could influence the owner. Soviet law establishes criminal responsibility for extortion of state or societal property, as well as private property of citizens (arts. 95 and 148 of the Criminal Code of the RSFSR and corresponding articles of the Criminal Codes of the other Union republics). Extortion is not covered in the codes of the Kirghiz, Uzbek, or Ukr SSR’s.

As distinct from such crimes as theft and robbery, in extortion the threat of violence is directed toward transferring property to the criminal and not toward overcoming the resistance of the victim; for this reason, when the threat of violence is made and the property is then handed over, the guilty party is responsible for both extortion and theft or extortion and robbery, depending on the nature of the violence.

The threat of exposing damaging information is called blackmail. For the crime of extortion the damaging information can be either real or false and slanderous. For example, according to the criminal codes of the Byelorussian, Kirghiz, and Tadzhik SSR’s, blackmail includes demanding property or the rights to property under the threat of exposing information that the victim wishes to keep secret. Extortion can be the means of committing some other crime, such as bribery.

Extortion of government or societal property is punished by loss of liberty for up to four years; extortion of personal property is punished by imprisonment for up to three years or corrective labor for up to one year.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
'I pay N300,000 for the transportation of my rams but before the rams get here another N300,000 goes for the various collections and extortions on the roads.
'But instead, they extort the drivers; government should make sure these excessive extortions stop as they affect business,' he said.
However, a fourth case of extortion (Faisal Thattani case) in the Old City area was not reported to the Rangers.
During a forum on 'Risks of Cyber Extortion', Sharjah Police warned citizens and residents against disclosing personal information and bank account numbers and being lured by misleading ads on the web.
Still another driver told Killid that the extortion starts at the Mirdawood check post and continues all the way to Adreskan, Shindand and other areas like Shawez, Farad Road and Tuot Chakab.
Since Kidnapping for ransom and extortion falls under the category of terrorism, therefore all such cases are dealt by the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD).
Justice Secretary Leila de Lima has ordered an investigation into a report of money extortion from Saudi nationals arrested for human trafficking in the Philippines.
These gangsters used to kill those people, who fail to pay extortion money, added the DIG.
In between the months of June and September alone, 30 cases of extortion have been reported in which 41 people have been arrested.llegal taxes from truckers, shopkeepers and businessmen continue to be taken.
Patna: Police in India's Bihar state are investigating the case of a road contractor who allegedly received an extortion letter with a bullet enclosed inside the envelope.
Local 807 set the stage for the enactment of the Hobbs Act, the federal government's comprehensive extortion statute.
Similarly, in the year 2015, 67 cases of extortion were reported as compared to 106 cases of extortion reported in corresponding period of 2014 showing a decline of 37%.