"their nude pictures would be posted online unless they paid"
An Indian man has been arrested for blackmailing and extorting money from more than 100 women.
Police have identified the accused as 26-year-old Sumit Jha, a resident of Noida, Uttar Pradesh.
It was reported that Jha used to download social media pictures of women and doctoring them before threatening to post them online unless they gave him money.
He would edit their faces onto the bodies of nude women.
Jha would then create fake social media profiles and send threatening messages to the victims, telling them he would post the nude photos unless they paid him.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (South District) Atul Thakur said:
“He would create fake profiles on the same social media platform, and send threatening messages to the women that their nude pictures would be posted online unless they paid money.”
DCP Thakur went on to say that the crime came to light when a female bank manager approached the police.
She complained about online harassment and receiving threats of having nude pictures of her being uploaded onto her Instagram account.
The victim also said that the accused had demanded money from her as well as her social media contacts.
DCP Thakur added: “The accused demanded money from the complainant and her contacts on social media.
“He was using Voiceover Internet Protocol (VoIP) calls through WhatsApp and other apps to avoid detection.”
On the basis of tip-offs and cooperation from the Internet service provider, police located Jha’s whereabouts and arrested him on December 29, 2020.
During questioning, the Indian man admitted to the crime and said he had blackmailed more than 100 women.
He told police that when his victims asked for proof, he would send them the fake nude photos as a method of leverage in order to blackmail them.
Jha then demanded money and actual nude photos from his victims.
Jha was arrested and charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Information Technology Act.
Police revealed that he was previously arrested on two occasions in 2018 by the Chhattisgarh and Uttar Pradesh Police.
In a separate case, a man from Kerala was arrested in 2019 for sexually exploiting more than 50 women by blackmailing and threatening them online.
Pradeesh Kumar befriended women on Facebook. He then created fake profiles and befriended their husbands while posing as a woman.
He then took screenshots of their chats and sent them to the wives, making them think their husbands were not loyal.
As part of his plan, Kumar then saved the chats and allegedly created morphed obscene images of the women, which he then used to blackmail them. He threatened to send the images to their husbands and families.