Sextortion in online dating sites is hitting main stream proportions, according to ABC News. Facebook, Tinder, OK Cupid, Suggardaddyforme.com, SeekingArrangement.com, Instagram, WhatsYourPrice.com, Wealthymen.com, Sugardaddy.com, Establishedmen.com, LoveStruck, Millionarematch, SugarDaddie, LoveMe, lavaPlace, Meetville, BeHappy2Day, loveAwake, DatingDirect and POF.com allegedly offer cyber space and are easy to lurk for sextortion attacks.
Social media websites like LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and others are used to find the targeted victims wives, children and friends. The extortion will then start quickly with high escalation to extreme pressure.
1.5 trillion US dollars is the student debt in America, and it will only continue to grow. Students are desperate to pay their bills, loans and live a life outside of school campus. According to USA Today, this creates necessity for students to seek alternative options to pay for school which can include the practice of sextortion.
The offender is usually attracted by a “great story of success.” An example is an internet blog titled – “How to Find Your Own Sugar Daddy (Like I Did)” by an online persona, Ariel Black who lives in New York City. Ariel Black highly recommends to “Get the Bang for your Buck”.
FBI in 2013 arrested a Florida woman for blackmailing a married older man she’d met on a site called sugardaddyforme.com. She had threatened to expose the nude photos of her 56 year old sugar daddy unless he paid her off, the feds said. As clever sugar baby, she also had allegedly lied about her age and sent her sugar daddy photos of a blonde porno star rather than of herself.
Other notable cases to mention is that of a 26-year-old Olympia woman, Seul ki Yum, who was sentenced to one month of work release and two months of electronic home monitoring after pleading guilty to extorting online dates for more than $300,000 USD. After Yum was charged, she suffered online harassment. People hacked into Yum’s LinkedIn professional page and bullied her on social media.
Mark Sherman, attorney representing Stephen Dent, is an expert in handling sextorion cases. His client Mr. Dent maintained a network of women or “slaves” and paid over US$200,000 for companionship and sex.
Patricia Miller, 46, of Cassopolis, Mich., has pleaded not guilty to alleged charges of first-degree conspiracy to commit larceny, first-degree criminal attempt at larceny and second-degree larceny for allegedly using various fake Internet personas to blackmail Dent and other wealthy men.
Brandon Wade, founder of SeekingArrangement addressed this issue in a blog and urges users not to use site for illegal activities.
Teen “Sugar Baby” is sued for $1.5 million by businessman ex-boyfriend, which shows that sextortion story can be also reversed, when acted quickly by alleged “sugar daddy”. Jessica Jiahui Lee posed as a real professional at a consultancy firm, while she was allegedly a professional “sugar baby”.
Joseph Lorio used sextortion by revenge porn to victimized over 30 women. Lorio, 21, of Holtsville, pleaded guilty to one count of Stalking in the First Degree, a D violent felony, and one count of Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, an E non-violent felony. He faces a sentence of five years in prison followed by three years of post-release supervision on the Stalking charge. Using victims’ personal information, Lorio was able to find the women on social media, Facebook nickname “Mike Gasgrove”, and attempt to extort them for additional sexually explicit photos and videos.