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Extortion

Las Vegas Extortion Lawyer: Understanding Nevada Crime of Extortion (NRS 205.320)

extortion lawExtortion is commonly known as “blackmailing” and is one of many serious white collar crimes in Nevada that can bring long prison sentences and can ruin your future chances of professional employment. Because blackmailing involves knowingly exploiting a weakness of another person or threatening to “ruin” them or their reputation, the criminal justice system punishes this crime in a harsh way.

If you have been arrested for extortion, contact LV Criminal Defense to begin your defense as soon as possible. Like other white collar crimes, there will likely have been an investigation before your arrest. This means that defending extortion charges is a complex process that requires the best criminal defense lawyer you can find.

Nevada Legal Definition of Extortion

If a person threatens to:

  • Falsely accuse another person of a crime;
  • To injure another person;
  • To publish a falsehood about the person (libel);
  • To expose the person to public disgrace; or
  • To expose a secret of another person

he or she can be liable for extortion if the threat is made for any of these reasons:

  • To gain money;
  • To gain property;
  • To compel another person to do something;
  • To induce another person into forging, signing, altering, or destroying a valuable document;
  • To influence the action of a public officer; or
  • To gain assistance in completing an illegal or wrongful act.

As you can see, extortion requires two steps. This also means that the prosecutor must prove both of these elements before you can be convicted of the Nevada crime of extortion. You should also notice that you do not have to actually injure, publish, or expose the other person to be convicted. Instead, extortion focuses on the threat of doing these things to another for your personal gain.

Other types of extortion involving debt collection

It is a separate crime to make a person believe he or she will be injured or their property damaged if they do not pay a debt. This is still a type of extortion but it carries its own set of punishments. Extortion involving debt collection is also a felony offense in Nevada.

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Sentencing for Extortion in Las Vegas, Nevada cases

Extortion is a Category B felony with prison time of 1 to 10 years, fines of up to $10,000, and a restitution requirement for the victim. Restitution is only a requirement if the victim paid the defendant to avoid the threatened injury or damage to the victim’s reputation.

Extortion involving debt collection carries slightly lower prison time of 1 to 6 years, but it is still a Nevada Category B felony.

What is the difference between extortion and bribery in Nevada?

Extortion involves forcing a person to do something by threatening a negative consequence if they do not, such as
revealing a secret. Bribery is different  because it involves making a person a deal he or she has a hard time refusing; this may mean money or gifts in exchange for changing their behavior. Both extortion and bribery are serious crimes in Nevada, but usually only one can be charged at a time based on the same set of facts.

Another way of thinking of the difference is that the victim of extortion pays money or does some other thing he or she would not normally do, while a victim of bribery receives money or other compensation to do something he or she may not have done otherwise.

More Information

An experienced criminal defense lawyer in Las Vegas can work to reduce the charges against you or even get them dismissed in an extortion case. Contact LV Criminal Defense to learn more about your rights and defenses if you have been arrested for extortion in Nevada.

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