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Teenager used bogus gay sex chatline to blackmail victims

A TEENAGE blackmailer ran a bogus gay sex chatline from his bedroom in his mum's flat - and forced 10 men to pay him nearly 90,000 British pounds. Kelz Sutherland, 19, tried to lure callers into talking about sex with children before threatening to play tapes of the calls to their families, employers and the police. He talked in one voice as he set out to trap victims, then switched to another and claimed to be the line's "monitor" or "moderator" before making his threats. The scheming teenager ordered the terrified men to pay thousands of pounds each to have their calls "deleted from the system". The cash was paid into the bank account of Sutherland's mother. Sutherland extorted a total of 87,700 pounds from callers including teachers and a company secretary with a charity. One man paid him 34,000 pounds in three months and another handed over 24,000 pounds in just a month. Sutherland used the cash to fund a life of luxury, hiring chauffeur-driven cars to go on nights out at expensive bars. Callers from across the UK got the sex line number from ads in free papers or porn magazines, and got through to Sutherland in his room at the flat he shared with mum Mary in Bath Street, Portobello, Edinburgh. Mary admits she knew her son was a gay escort and used his bedroom to "talk sexy" to clients, but she denies knowing anything about the blackmail plot. Some of the callers were interested in gay sex, others in sex with women. Sutherland would pretend to be a woman if the caller was heterosexual. Once he had a caller on the line, Sutherland would try to steer the conversation to illegal underage sex. He then changed his voice to become the "monitor" and threatened to expose the caller to police. If the men did not pay up immediately, Sutherland would bombard them with threatening phone calls. He obtained callers' details, including dates of birth, phone numbers and even the addresses of relatives and friends. Sutherland continued his scam for two years, but was finally caught when one man went to police after Sutherland told him to hand over 8000 pounds . The cops tapped the man's phone and listened in as Sutherland called to demand payment. Officers raided Sutherland's flat on January 23 this year. A search of his laptop revealed the phone numbers, home addresses and workplaces of the men who had called the sex line. Mary Sutherland was also arrested because the cash was paid into her account, but she was not charged. Sutherland pled guilty at Edinburgh Sheriff Court yesterday to extorting 87,700 pounds from 10 men between January 1 2008 and December 31 2009. The teenager flew into a rage in the dock before he was remanded in custody to await sentence.He shouted: "These men are all f ****** paedophiles. That 's why I targeted them. "Why is it me that's sitting here and not them?"(continues)

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