Not every criminal lawyer in New York is an Extortion lawyer or Blackmail attorney. You can be well versed in the New York Penal Law, but not be familiar or have experience with the numerous subsections and theories of a Grand Larceny Extortion case. Fortunately for a Crotty Saland PC client, knowledge, experience and advocacy paid off in what on its face appeared to be a clear-cut violation of New York Penal Law 155.30(6) and other crimes.
After a night of consuming alcohol, our client was alleged to have demanded thousands of dollar from a fellow reveler encountered the night before. More than a mere inconsequential meeting, our client woke in the bed of this man having no recollection of coming home with him. Upon learning that the two had intercourse, our client became extremely alarmed and insisted any sex was without consent. While it was likely indisputable that our client lacked the ability to consent, our client allegedly made a grave mistake and demanded multiple thousands of dollars from the man or our client would report the crime to the NYPD. Ultimately cutting our client a check, our client left and only reported the incident after the check did not clear. At the same time, the man filed a complaint for Extortion.
If true, and for the sake of a conversation and advocacy we could argue that the above is accurate, even if our client in fact Blackmailed the man, the man should not have taken an inebriated and unaware person back to his home for sex. It is not merely wrong, but potentially criminal. That said, it certainly is not advisable for one to take justice into one’s own hands and demand some form of payment for silence.
Now back to the case…
Upon building a package mitigating our client’s conduct, challenging the accuracy of the allegations and confronting the prosecution with the fact that the complainant’s conduct was criminal or ad least ethically challenged, the District Attorney’s Office agreed to work with our criminal attorneys on an appropriate resolution. That disposition, which our client recently accepted, was neither a felony nor misdemeanor conviction. Instead, our client pleaded to a Disorderly Conduct pursuant to New York Penal Law 240.20. In one year the case sealed to the public and our client can honestly state on any application whether for employment or otherwise that our client is free from any criminal conviction history.
Extortion and Blackmail are extremely serious offenses. There is no one size fits all to either defend yourself against these allegations or to protect yourself as a victim of these crimes. While the New York criminal lawyers and former Manhattan prosecutors at Crotty Saland PC have represented and continue to represent clients who are both complainant and defendant in these schemes, there is no substitute for knowledge and experience to put a client in the best position to secure the most acceptable resolution.
Do not blindly accept your counsel’s recommendations and answers to your questions. Educate yourself so you can assist in your defense. Learn about the law, process and procedure. Review the materials found throughout this blog as we well as the blog and website listed below.