Next steps in extortion case - ideas?

C. A. Fillekes cfillekes at
Sat Jul 5 18:35:01 UTC 2014

17 is generally the number of people required, in the US, to file a case as
a class, which is why I said Markus should find 16 _other_ victims, which
shouldn't be terribly hard, if we believe his claim that this scammer has
targeted numerous others in this way.

Furthermore, since the internet is everywhere, I pointed out (or did you
stop reading after I mentioned that we don't actually know the gender of
the scammer?) Markus has the option of pursuing this in a jurisdiction
where the penalties for criminal defamation are the harshest.  It would not
have to be in the US.

Finally, you fail to address the one very simple way I described to
determine who this scammer is: follow the money.  Make a small partial
payment on this supposed "debt" and see who cashes the check.  Much easier
than trying to follow "him" around on the internet, though that would be
made easier in the course of negotiating a partial payment.

On Sat, Jul 5, 2014 at 1:27 PM, William Herrin <bill at> wrote:

> On Sat, Jul 5, 2014 at 11:59 AM, C. A. Fillekes <cfillekes at>
> wrote:
> > IANAL but I believe criminal defamation is (ta-da!) a criminal offense.
> Only 17 of the 50 states have criminal defamation laws and in half a
> century only 16 cases have resulted in conviction. More, a 2012 ruling
> by the U.N. Commission on Human Rights found that criminalization of
> libel is inconsistent with Article 19 of the International Covenant on
> Civil and Political Rights, making prosecutors that much less willing
> to file defamation charges based on your complaint.
> Libel is a civil tort. Pursuing it as a crime won't work out for you.
> Also, you don't generally file a class action suit unless the class is
> (A) large and (B) readily identified. When you have 16 actual
> plaintiffs you file suit with 16 actual complaints. Much easier to
> win.
> I concur with the suggestion to ask folks at the Electronic Frontier
> Foundation to refer you to a good U.S. lawyer. That's a smart move.
> The Anti-Defamation League may also be of help though this sort of
> thing isn't quite their bread and butter.
> Regards,
> Bill Herrin
> --
> William D. Herrin ................ herrin at  bill at
> 3005 Crane Dr. ...................... Web: <>
> Falls Church, VA 22042-3004

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