Blackmail- Statutory Offence : CRIMES ACT 1958 -S 87

Elements Prosecution Must Prove

1- Accused makes an unwarranted demand with menaces
2 -
Demand is made by accused with view to gain for himself or another, or cause a loss to another

What is an unwarranted demand?

The Crimes Act1958 holds that a demand with menaces is unwarranted unless the person making the demand does so in the belief that he has reasonable grounds for making the demand, and that the use of menaces is proper means of reinforcing the demand.  A bona fide belief that the demand and menace were justified would make the demand innocent.

What is menaces?

Can relate to a threat of harm, or threats to property. Can include menaces or threats of danger by conduct even where such threatened conduct does not amount to a criminal offence. Words or conduct that would not intimate or influence a reasonable person to respond to the demand are not considered menaces.


Maximum sentence is 15 years imprisonment. Chances of imprisonment depends largely on the nature of the demand and menace involved, and the existence of mitigating and aggravating factors.


Related Offences

  1. False accounting
  2. Theft
  3. Obtaining Financial Advantage by Deception


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