A conman who stole thousands from victims after pretending to be a gay rent boy has been jailed for six years.
Robert Bain forced one of his victims to come out to his family after demanding money to keep his sexuality a secret.
The conman said he would frame him as child abuser and reveal his private life online and in the local newspaper.
He also conned £16,000 out of another man by claiming he had a sick child and needed care before threatening him with gangsters.
One of the victims was intimated in his own home and was told his family would be hurt if he didn’t hand over the large sums of cash.
During the court proceedings, one of the victim statements read: “I feel I can’t trust anyone and I’m paranoid I will be taken advantage of.
“He had no right to take advantage of my good nature the way he did. He made me live in fear. The difficulties will remain with me for some time yet and may never go away.”
Bain also pretended to be a male prostitute and met with another man before claiming he was from an anti-paedophile group Protectors of the North.
He told the man: “You are going to get caught, you are a paedo, a nonce” before demanding cash from him.
Prosecutor Mark Giuliani told the court: “He said things would be put on the internet that would identify him as a homosexual man.
“He said to him he was going to put things online and in the Evening Chronicle, saying he was going to out him, he was going to say he was a paedo, a nonce, and f****t.”
The victim paid a total of £1,260 when Bain turned up at his home again demanding more money but he refused to pay.
Mr Giuliani said: “Having stood up to the defendant, the complainant went home and effectively broke down and told members of his family what had been happening to him.
“He felt it necessary to inform his family he was, in fact, gay. He had to out himself.”
Judge Simon Batiste said: “Eventually, one man went inside and told his family what was happening and the fact he was gay.
“As a result of this offence he, in fact, had to out himself to his family.”
Bain was jailed for six years at Newcastle Crown Court on Wednesday (18.04.18).