Mother-of-one who blackmailed man out of £200 by falsely accusing him of rape is spared jail after judge said her plot was ‘not sophisticated’
- Chelsea Orton, 22, blackmailed man out of £200 with fake rape claim in 2019
- Victim said they had ‘sleepless nights’ and was taking anti-depressants
- Orton sentenced to 18 month suspended sentence and will pay compensation
- Warwick Crown Court judge said the crime was not ‘sophisticated’
A mother who blackmailed a man out of £200 by falsely accusing him of rape was spared jail by a judge who said her crime was ‘not sophisticated’.
Chelsea Orton, 22, admitted blackmailing the man, who cannot be named, out of £200 between July and August 2019 by threatening to accuse him of rape.
Warwick Crown Court heard she told the man’s family about the rape lie in a bid to give her fake story credibility.
Judge Louisa Ciecióra said it was in Orton’s favour that her crime was ‘not sophisticated’ and that she had no previous convictions.
She left her victim needing anti-depressants after he suffered abuse from people wrongly branding him a rapist.
The mother-of-one was finally caught when her victim plucked up the courage to report her to police.
Orton, from Nuneaton, admitted one count of blackmail and was handed an 18-month prison term, suspended for 12 months.
She was also ordered to pay her victim £200 compensation.
Orton, 22, swindled her victim – who cannot be named for legal reasons – out of £200 by falsely claiming that he had raped her. Her victim was left needing anti-depressants after being falsely accused
The 22-year-old mum was given a suspended sentence of 18 months and ordered to pay the victim £200 in compensation after being convicted of one offence of blackmail
Orton told the victim in July 2019 that he had raped her and repeatedly demanded money from him.
She said she would otherwise go to the police. Orton also told family members of the victim that he had sexually assaulted her and made consistent threats.
Judge Louisa Ciecióra told Orton she had caused harm and that similar crimes would usually mean prison time.
‘The impact on the victim has been quite severe, he had to go through a police investigation and is suffering ongoing distress as a result of your conduct.
‘Blackmail is always a serious matter and immediate terms of custody are usually to be anticipated,’ the Judge explained.
‘In your favour is the fact that this was not sophisticated. You have no previous convictions.
‘I’m going to order that you pay £200 in compensation to your victim.’
Warwick Crown Court heard that the victim had changed his phone number and started anti-depressants as a result of Orton’s blackmail
The court heard the victim was so distraught at Orton’s lies he changed his phone number to stop her contacting him.
Prosecutor Caroline Harris said the victim had been terrified to go to the police but a colleague had encouraged him to.
‘On 3rd August 2019 the victim confided in a colleague who suggested that he report the matter to the police.
‘On 5th August the defendant reported to the police that she had been raped by the victim and the decision was taken by the police to investigate the rape allegation first before the blackmail allegation.
Orton was then interviewed by police in January and accepted that the messages had been sent from her phone, although she claimed not to have sent all of them.
Ms Harris told the court that: ‘She said she would not have asked victim for his bike or phone as they would have meant a lot to him.
‘She accepted taking money from him, around £60 to £100 and when a higher figure was put to her she accepted that this was possible too.’
In a victim statement read by Ms Harris, the victim said he had been left needing anti-depressants to get over the upset caused by Orton’s claims.
‘When all this first happened and Chelsea was blackmailing me I felt trapped.
‘I was scared and this caused me anxiety. As it went on and it was reported to the police I became depressed. I had sleepless nights,’ the victim explained.
‘Even though I hadn’t done anything wrong all I could think was that I would be arrested because of her lies.
The victim added that his reputation had been damaged by the claims and that people would abuse him in public.
‘Her behaviour has had an impact on my social life. I had incidents when I was out at my local pub where random people would come up to me and call me a rapist.
‘I had to see my GP to help me cope. I was prescribed anti-depressants.’