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Four men sent to prison for blackmailing couple in NI

A senior PSNI officer said blackmail can be a “difficult crime to combat”.

The four men were sentenced today at Belfast Crown Court.
The four men were sentenced today at Belfast Crown Court.
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FOUR MEN HAVE been handed prison sentences at Belfast Crown Court today for blackmailing a couple in Northern Ireland.

Gary Fulton (40), Philip Blaney (48) and Marc Briggs (40)  were each sentenced to five years imprisonment for their roles in the blackmail of a couple in March 2011. They all pleaded guilty to two counts of blackmail.

Daniel Hamilton (31) was also sentenced to two years and eight months imprisonment after pleading guilty to aiding and abetting blackmail.

Detective Superintendent Philip Marshall, of the PSNI’s Organised Crime Branch, said sentencing was “the culmination of a complex and professional investigation”.

He said that blackmail can be a “difficult crime to combat” but police have systems in place to ensure that those who come forward with complaints are looked after properly. “We will work with them to ensure those responsible are apprehended,” he added.

“Today’s sentencing demonstrates that the police and partners within the Criminal Justice System will bring those responsible for terrorising people to court and that those who are made amenable can expect to receive substantial sentences,” said Marshall.

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