No jail Suspended sentence for woman who threatened to send 'compromising' photos of man to his family
A woman who threatened to send “compromising” photos of a man to his friends and family and refused to stop contacting him over a five-year period has received a fully suspended sentence.
During the period of harassment Roxana Dufficy (32) messaged several of the victim's family members claiming that he was not the father of his girlfriend's unborn child, although his girlfriend was not pregnant at the time.
Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that Dufficy would ring the man's work looking for him “almost constantly” and that she sent multiple letters to his mother's home.
Dufficy of Holywell Meadows, Swords, Co Dublin, pleaded guilty to harassment at unknown locations on dates between October 1, 2013 and June 12, 2018. She has two previous convictions for theft.
The court was told the pair met on a dating website and after two weeks exchanged phone numbers.
After four weeks of messaging the man received “an unusual exchange” from an anonymous person on the dating website. As a result of this he told Dufficy that he no longer wished to be in contact with her.
Dufficy responded by saying that it would be “embarrassing” for him if his family, friends and work colleagues saw some of the message or pictures he had sent her. These included photos he had taken of himself “in compromising positions”.
The victim “panicked” and continued to communicate with her while attempting several times to distance himself. On these occasions Dufficy would threaten to release the material or to ring his parents' home.
The harassment continued over the following years and included “almost constant” calls to his place of work.
A number of Facebook and Linkedin accounts in the man's name were opened that generally showed him topless. He received continuous messages on various social media platforms and letters were sent to his mother's home.
Dufficy was arrested by gardaí in June 2018. She made admissions to most of the harassment and admitted she was aware that the man did not want her to contact him.
Gda O'Connor said Dufficy appeared to believe she was in a closer relationship with the man than was the case. He said she believed the reason he did not want her to contact him was because he was angry about something that had happened.
The court heard Dufficy has not contacted the man since the date of her arrest.
Mark Lynam BL, defending, said his client's mother died when she was young and her mental health was “very poor” by the time of 2013 and 2014. He said she wishes to travel to Australia as she has a partner there.
Judge Martin Nolan said that Dufficy “made life miserable for this man”. He noted that she had no relevant record of conviction, that she had expressed remorse and that she had pleaded guilty.
Judge Nolan sentenced Dufficy to two-and-a-half years imprisonment, but suspended the entirety of the sentence on condition that she keep the peace and be of good behaviour for two-and-a-half years.
He also made an order prohibiting her from ever again contacting the man, any member of his extended family or any person she knew to be his friend.
He said that if she breached this order she would be brought back to court and prosecuted.