Young people affected by Sextortion speak out after number of incidents rise six-fold across Nottinghamshire

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Young people duped by criminals to send over naked pictures or videos of themselves have spoken out to raise awareness of the devastating crime.

Sextortion is where criminals pose as ‘young and attractive’ women online and then befriend men usually in their teens or early 20s on their social media platforms.

They will encourage them to send naked pictures or videos of themselves and then use that material against them, threatening to send it to family and friends unless they are paid.

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Shocking figures reveal the number of Sextortion reports across Nottingham and Nottinghamshire have increased six-fold over the last few years – from 80 reports in 2019 to a staggering 547 in 2023. More than 100 reports have already been made this year.

Image shared by Nottinghamshire Police.Image shared by Nottinghamshire Police.
Image shared by Nottinghamshire Police.

Due to the nature of the crime, the victims will remain anonymous.

Paul, not his real name, is only 22 years old and studying at Nottingham Trent University.

He is in his final year of studying and never thought he would fall for such a scam.

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He said: “This incident has made me feel terrible, I couldn’t sleep. I have been stressed out from the threats and I have not been able to eat.

“I have also been struggling with university and I am unable to study for my assignments due to the stress.”

Jack, not his real name, is 29 years old. He was sat at home when his evening took an extremely dark turn.

He said: “I don't normally add strangers on social media but decided to accept it on this occasion. The account messaged me first.

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He said he exchanged photos and videos with who he believed was a young woman until he was told that by two males that they had all his details and if he did not pay, they would share the footage and photos with his Instagram friends.

He said the criminals were asking for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Paypal.

Jack, not his real name, said he sent over £1,600 but was asked for more.

And it is not just young men that have fallen victim to the scam.

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Katie, not her real name, aged 18, went through an eight-month ordeal at the hands of these criminals before she finally contacted the police.

Detectives from Nottinghamshire Police are currently investigating all three incidents.