The Ajman Police have arrested a 23-year-old man for blackmailing an Arab woman using a photo he had received by mistake via WhatsApp. Investigations have shown that the Asian man got the picture from a WhatsApp group he wasn’t supposed to be a part of.
Lt-Col Yahya Khalaf Al Matroushi, director of Al Hamidiyah police station, said the 20-year-old woman claimed that the stranger was threatening to post a photo of her on social media, should she refuse to give him a certain amount of money.
The photo – where the woman is seen with a man – was fabricated, the complainant claimed, adding that she didn’t even know the person who was edited into her photo.
The complainant and her friends were all members of a WhatsApp group, where they would usually share photos. It turned out, one of the members of the group changed her number a year ago, and the old number had not been deleted from their WhatsApp contact list.
Hence, when the stranger started using the number, he was automatically added to the group – receiving all the photos and messages that were shared by the women.
The women decided to file a complaint at the police station, and the authorities immediately dispatched a team to track down the blackmailing suspect.
The Asian man was then arrested and, according to the police, he admitted that he edited his image into the woman’s photo to make it appear like “they were having an affair”.
The case has been referred to the public prosecution for further investigation.
Lt-Col Matroushi urged the public in sending messages or sharing pictures on social media and other smart apps. He reiterated that invasion of privacy, in any form, is punishable by law.