When one is charged with extortion, they have been accused of something very serious. Penalties can be severe if an individual is convicted of extortion charges. To be charged with extortion means that someone has been accused of trying to force an individual to give them something or do something for them.
One can be charged with extortion for a number of reasons. There are many different occurrences that can fall under the category of extortion. Extorting someone for money means to threaten them with physical or personal harm if they do not comply with one's demands. Writing and sending a ransom note is one way an individual could be charged with extortion. This is because the individual was making a threat in order to receive a sum of money.
Financial issues are a common reason why an individual might be brought up on extortion charges. There have been many authority figures that have been convicted of or charged with extortion. There have also been a number of high ranking members of organized crime families.
Extortion charges do not just revolve around physical violence. A person can be charged with extortion if they threaten to tell private information about an individual. An extortionist will demand something in return for their silence. Sometimes, one's reputation can mean more to the person than money. The person being extorted may consider it to be within their best interest to comply with the extortionist's demands. However, if the individual is caught taking money or anything else because of their threat, they will usually be charged with extortion.
In general, someone facing extortion charges has been accused of threatening to cause some type of harm to another person unless that person complies with their demands. Since extortion charges are serious, one should hire a good attorney if they can afford it. Usually the person being extorted is financially well-off or a person with a high profile. This is if there are large sums of money or high profile reputations involved.
Extortion on a smaller scale can be a person threatening to tell a man's wife he had an affair unless the man does something for the extortionist or pays them off. That person can still be charged with extortion, although it would be on a much smaller scale than some other high profile cases.
Being charged with extortion is very serious. A conviction could lead to many harsh penalties that could even include jail time. Since there have been many professional people that have been charged and convicted of extortion, it is sometimes referred to as a white collar crime