A British gambling degenerate has been thrown behind bars after he was found to have blackmailed vulnerable dog owners by threatening to kill their lost pets if they did not pay up.
Mohammed Miah, 25, would look for “lost pet” signs plastered around town as well as online messages then contact the distraught owners.
He told some of the owners that if they did not pay sums of hundreds of pounds into his account, he would kill the dogs.
"If you are a dog lover, losing it is bad enough but to hear it will be killed if you don't pay up means you would be signing its death warrant," prosecutor Gareth Walters said.
Miah also contacted people who had posted over the Net requesting information about their stolen cars.
The scams netted a total of £5,250 over eight months. He would often demand a payment of £5,000 then drop the price down to £300. Should the pet owner refuse to pay up, a text would be sent asking “where do you want the bodies?”.
Miah never had the individuals pets or automobiles. He was eventually tracked down via his own phone and bank account.
Miah pleaded guilty to 15 charges of fraud and four of blackmail.
Andrew Baker, defending, said Miah was a gambling addict who had conceived the scam after getting into debt.
"It is a nasty and unpleasant offence," he said. "Perhaps it shows the dangers of advertising rewards online. You could be prey to this type of person."
- Jagajeet Chiba, Gambling911.com