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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 September 2018

Man 'blackmailed sisters out of thousands of dirhams over private Snapchat pictures' 

Suspect arrested in Abu Dhabi over Dh6,000 blackmail, prosecutors say

A man who allegedly blackmailed two sisters out of Dh6,000 after befriending one of them on Snapchat has been arrested on will remain in custody for seven days, Abu Dhabi prosecutors said on Wednesday.

The man got chatting to one of them frequently but then set up another Snapchat account and used it to threaten to publish private pictures of the pair if they did not pay him money, it is alleged.

The sisters paid him Dh6,000 but a month later he asked for an additional Dh9,000, so they reported the incident to police, they said.

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Prosecutors said they managed to track down the user using computer technology.

“The methods used by the defendant in this case formed a challenge for the specialised IT professionals in the department, for he has a vast experience of camouflaging and hiding prosecuting evidence,” said Abu Dhabi attorney general Mohammed Al Buloushi.

However, he said they were able to find technical incriminating evidence despite the suspect’s best efforts to conceal them.

Mr Al Buloushi also encouraged people to report threats or blackmail, regardless of the details of them, as he assured people such information would remain confidential.

Under the UAE cyber crime law, punishment for online blackmail can lead to up to three years in jail and/or a fine up to Dh1 million.

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