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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.



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.


References in periodicals archive ?
BEIRUT: The Lebanese Army arrested a gang in Akkar's Fnaydeq Tuesday on charges of extorting protection money from citizens.
Toyota and Nissan said they paid off the same alleged corporate gangsters accused of extorting payments from Japan Airlines.
A traffic enforcer was nabbed in an entrapment operation by the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) District Special Operations Unit (DSOU) for extorting grease money from a bus operator, Radyo Inquirer reported on Wednesday.
RAWALPINDI -- Two traffic wardens were dismissed from service on Thursday after they were caught extorting money from motorists.
According to media reports around three illegal education institutions running in Islamabad, are extorting millions of rupees from the students in the name of higher education.
A swimming coach has been charged in the Court of First Instance with blackmailing his ex-girlfriend and sending her very personal photos to her uncle, and extorting Dh2,000 from her.
8 ( ANI ): In a shocking revelation, a senior police officer in Bokaro has said that Maoists are not even sparing poor farmers while extorting money, and, they kill those who do not pay up.
TV actor Takayasu Sugiura, who plays the title character on ''Ultraman Cosmos,'' a popular children's TV show, was arrested Friday on suspicion of punching a vocational school student and extorting money from him in 2000, police said.
FAISALABAD -- Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has arrested a human trafficker for extorting money from a citizen for sending him abroad.
Vitangcol and his alleged envoy Wilson De Vera were accused of extorting $30 million from Inekon Group CEO and chair Josef Husek in the residence of then Czech Ambassador to the Philippines Josef Rychtar in exchange for granting Inekon the P3.