Federal Blackmail and Extortion – 18 U.S.C. § 873

This has to do with blackmail, extortion where people are basically trying to get goods, valuables, money, and services and they're extorting another person.  A lot of times, you're going to see this with politicians, especially at the federal level.  If anybody in the government is being extorted, the feds will become involved. 

Otherwise, if it's just a couple of knuckle-heads extorting each other back and forth, typically, the state is going to deal with that, and the feds are not going to touch that.

The feds only get involved in sophisticated cases — where you have a situation where somebody is a celebrity, or in some other circumstance — where it makes sense that the feds get involved in order to prosecute a person because they're using some sort of sophistication, bribery cases where extortion is involved or blackmail is involved, any type of an actor — I can see the federal government getting involved.

Description of 18 U.S. Code § 873

I've handled a lot of extortion cases over the last twenty-five years, and if you're charged with an extortion-related offense, and they're using the United States Code to charge you in Section 873, which has to do with blackmail and extortion, then what you're going to want to do obviously, is to get a seasoned federal criminal defense attorney to defend you in these cases.

Really, what you're talking about is someone either calling somebody, meeting in person, and attempting to get that person to give him some money or do something for them or give them some sort of valuable consideration as part of a plot to extort that person. 

I've seen tape-recorded conversations being used.  I've seen all sorts of different angles being used in order to effectuate the extortion that we're talking about.

If you're charged with extortion in the federal setting, you're looking at going to a post-indictment arraignment, they're going to show you the charging documents, which again, is typically an indictment, and you're going to have an opportunity to try to post bail.

Either it will be a property bond or some sort of a signature bond where you can get out — or if the extortion is serious or dangerous enough, you have enough of a record, or the government can show enough of a threat to the person being extorted.

Then, the judge can put no bail on you, and then you would not be able to get out, and you would have to fight your case and be found not guilty before you can get our or receive some sort of a sentence that either covered all of your custody time or puts you in a position where you were able to avoid any type of custody time in the federal setting.

Developing a Defense Strategy

So, if you're charged with extortion, pick up the phone.  Give me a call.  We can talk about your criminal matter, and we can decide whether it's something that I can help you with and after your arraignment in a criminal case, then they're going to put you in front of a judge, and that judge will be your judge, for the remainder of the case.

It's typically going to be one of the tenured federal judges who are tenured for life.  In other words, they're in a position where they're going to be a judge for life.  They're going to sit on your case.  You can't get rid of them unless there's some sort of challenge for the cause.

So, obviously, you want to make sure that you have an attorney who is familiar with that judge, familiar with the courthouse your case is pending, and has handled federal extortion cases — has the sophistication, has the knowledge base, knows how to fight the case if necessary, and obviously has the ability to negotiate if that's what's best in your federal criminal extortion matter.

Are you facing charges of the federal offense of extortion? If so, you would definitely need an experienced and well-seasoned federal criminal defense attorney to get on board with you. Our federal criminal defense attorneys are equipped with the necessary experience, skill, and knowledge to effectively and competently represent you.

If you are facing extortion charges, it is important that you seek our services because our Los Angeles Federal Defense Attorneys will do everything possible to get you favorable results.

Extortion (blackmail) is the gaining of property or money by threat of harm to a person, property, or reputation or force. Displaying an immediate danger to the victim is not a necessary element to the charge of extortion, but mere words of threat or use of force to gain property or money from another person suffice.

A few examples of extortion are bribery, ransom, ad blackmail. A conviction of the crime of extortion has some serious and severe penalties, as high as up to 20 years in prison and excessive fines. As your lawyer, we do everything we can to avoid harsh penalties and get you favorable results. 

Our lawyers are well seasoned and well educated on extortion laws and the federal system and how things work. We can definitely help you!

If you or someone you know is facing federal extortion charges, contact our law firm and set up a free face-to-face consultation. We will get started on your case immediately.

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