Sheriff Warns of “Sextortion” When Using Online Chatrooms
REGIONAL – Sheriff Al Nienhuis issued a warning to anyone using online chatrooms to beware of a new scam.
Since October of last year, officials say several cases have been investigated involving sexual extortion (sextortion), threats, fraud, and internet sexual abuse.
The suspects use attractive photographs to lure their victims through chatrooms, usually Facebook messenger. Once a rapport is established with the victim, the suspect initiates a video chat and convinces the victim to perform sexual acts on video. The suspect then threatens the victim by claiming they will share the video with family and friends if they are not paid.
Victims as young as 13 have come forward and officials are concerned that some may consider suicide because of embarrassment or other consequences.
The suspects have posed as men and women in these cases.
Officials suggest not communicating with individuals online who you do not know.
Anyone who feels they may have been a target of this scam is asked to contact Detective Tom Breedlove at 352-754-6830.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, redistributed. ™2013 – 2018 RNRF Incorporated.