202

Love-spell extortionist gets 2 years in US federal prison

SAN DIEGO (AP) — An Argentinian man who ran an international extortion scheme that victimized lovelorn believers in witchcraft has been sentenced in California to two years in prison.

Ariel Boiteux was sentenced Monday in San Diego federal court.

Authorities say Boiteux and his associates, working out of Paraguay, placed online ads offering to perform magic spells to help people find love. Clients were told to record themselves performing sexual acts and send the recordings to Boiteux to complete the spells.

Instead, authorities say victims were threatened with having their recordings posted online unless they paid up. One public figure reportedly received demands for $250,000.

Authorities say more than 200 people worldwide were conned.

Boiteux was arrested in Paraguay, extradited and pleaded guilty last year to foreign transmission of an extortionate threat.

Copyright © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.