Two men blackmailed a man out of thousands of pounds by threatening to reveal that he was gay.
Michael Rose, 20 and Elliot Haynes, 19, were at the centre of a “nasty little crime” between March and November 2015 where they blackmailed their victim into handing over £3,360 to keep quiet about his sexuality.
Vile messages were sent over Facebook calling the victim a “sick paedophile” and threatening to beat him up, Plymouth Crown Court heard.
The victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, lost his job and had to sell his car to pay Rose to keep quiet about his sexuality.
In June, Rose, of Hill Park Crescent, Greenbank, pleaded guilty to two counts of demanding money with menaces from a man.
Haynes, of Exeter Road, Ivybridge, initially denied the joint charge of blackmail but changed his plea to guilty on November 14.
Sentencing the pair for their “nasty crime”, Judge Lawrie said: “You colluded in targeting and picking on a vulnerable young man to exploit who he was, given there were clearly issues about what he would be comfortable telling his parents.”
Judge Lawrie sentenced Rose to 28 months in prison for each count, with both sentences to run concurrently.
Judge Lawrie handed Haynes a 12 month sentence suspended for two years and ordered him to complete 240 days of unpaid work, 20 days of rehabilitation days and 19 sessions of thinking skills.
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