Five men were arrested in Visakhapatnam in eastern India last week after allegedly extorting money from a businessmen who met one of them for a sexual encounter.
The victim, 24, is an employee of a multinational company who met one of the perpetrators online and agreed to meet at his home. “The complainant stated that four men barged in the room of the accused while he was with the latter,” according to Joint Commissioner of Police D Nagendra Kumar. “They clicked his photos and videos of them in the nude while posing as officers of the City Task Force Police Station.”
The accused then forced the victim to give them 100,000 rupees, or about $1,500, by threatening to release the photos. The following day, they withdrew another $1,500 using the victim’s ATM card.
Police believe the suspects have perpetrated similar blackmail schemes in the past in the city. They’ve been charged with criminal intimidation, extortion and impersonating police officers.
Homosexuality is illegal in India and while the law is rarely enforced, the cultural stigma leaves means many gays and lesbians are still closeted.