In an incident in the US state of Florida, a man has been accused of beating and kidnapping a gay man after posing as a potential sex partner. Two other suspects allegedly involved in the kidnapping remain at large.
The alleged victim reported the incident to the police, saying he had originally met the accused, 20 year-old Matthew Evans, on Instagram. Following their contact, Evans and another man arranged to meet the complainant at the Sebastian River Landing gated community clubhouse at 11 at night on November 18 for a sexual encounter. It was agreed that Evans would be paid $50 for the meeting.
When the accuser arrived, he says he was verbally assaulted by Evans and put in a choke hold he could not escape from. The two then got into a car driven by the other man and headed to the nearby San Sebastian Park.
At this new location, another member of the gang was in wait armed with a handgun. The complainant was dragged from the car whereupon the accused demanded money from him. After the demand he was repeatedly punched in the face until he was knocked unconscious, the attack breaking his nose and severely damaging his cheekbone.
When the complainant eventually came to, his alleged attackers were gone, taking with them his pants, his phone and his money. With a bleeding, swollen face and with clothes missing, the man was able to walk home whereupon he contacted the police and reported the incident.
Matthew Evans was subsequently arrested by the authorities and charged. He was placed in the Indian River County Jail where he currently remains without bail. The driver of the car and the third, armed, member of the gang are still at large but arrest warrants for both have been issued.
There have been recent stories of gay dating apps being used to blackmail victims. In one case, a Cork man was found guilty of the crime and in another, a Turkish pop star was accused of blackmailing over 50 men he met on hook-up apps.
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