Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Man Was Blackmailed by Prostitute and Associate

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Man Was Blackmailed by Prostitute and Associate

Article excerpt

Byline: Gareth Lightfoot Court Reporter gareth.lightfoot@trinitymirror.com

A VULNERABLE man was targeted and blackmailed by a prostitute and her male associate.

He was bullied into handing over money and his watch and taken in a van to supermarket cashpoint machines, jurors were told. His tormentors "turned up the heat" on the victim as their extortion escalated to threats and false allegations of sexual assault.

Marcela Dotkova, 28, of Aire Street, Gresham, Middlesbrough, pleaded guilty to blackmailing the man, who cannot be named for legal reasons.

Mohammed Hanif Din, 34, of Waterloo Road, central Middlesbrough, denied the charge but was found guilty after a twoday trial last week.

Teesside Crown Court heard how the victim invited Dotkova home after she asked for a cigarette and suggested sex as he walked home from a night out in Middlesbrough on November 28 last year.

Prosecutor Rachel Masters said her price increased from PS20 to PS70, which he paid, but no sex took place as the woman took a phone call then left with the money.

Days later she came back and knocked on the man's door twice, asking for money.

She said her brother believed they had sex and suggested people were waiting for him.

He went to a cashpoint and emptied his bank account of its PS90 balance for her.

He also gave her his watch, fearing for his safety while not wanting to tell anyone what was going on.

Dotkova turned up again, this time accompanied by Din, on December 9. Din was aggressive, demanding PS50 and threatening to call the police with an allegation of sexual assault.

Miss Masters said: "This must have been a terrifying threat."

The pressured, scared victim got into Din's bright orange Ford Transit van, took them to an ATM and showed them he had nothing in his bank account.

He went into two supermarket stores and got PS30 cash back, but Din wanted more and the panicking victim told them he could get the money later. …

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