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A North Carolina resident may be the victim of blackmail if they are threatened with negative consequences for not meeting a person's demands. In most cases, the consequence for failure to meet the demand is the release of embarrassing or damaging information. For instance, the perpetrator of a blackmail scheme could reveal that the victim committed a crime or falsely accuse the victim of committing a crime.

While blackmail is considered a crime at the state and federal level, it may be defined as theft if the scheme involves money. Blackmail is considered a federal offense if the perpetrator uses a phone or online forum to convey a threat or release damaging information. The same is true if the plot involves an attempt to manipulate a politician for political gain. Finally, blackmail could be considered a federal offense if an individual threatens to accuse a person of a federal crime if demands are not met.

In some cases, individuals who engage in blackmail will face federal extortion charges. The difference between blackmail and extortion is that blackmail involves committing a crime to gain information. Extortion is a crime in which a person uses either political influence or physical force to obtain something.

Those accused of internet crimes that are committed across state lines may face federal charges. This could mean facing penalties such as time in prison as well as a fine. Other penalties might also apply depending on the charges. An attorney may be able to help a client get a criminal charge dismissed or reduced prior to a trial.

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