A nurse turned escort attempted to extort hundreds of dollars from her clients while threatening to expose their actions to their wives and girlfriends if they didn’t pay up, a court has been told.
Chloe Jessica Earle dabbed at her eyes as the crown revealed the shocking actions she took to recover the money she believed she was owed by people who backed out of using her services.
Prosecutors submitted Earle – who the court was told had undergone a gender transition at age 20 – should spend time behind bars, but her lawyer said she would be at risk in custody.
Instead, Earle, 37, will have to serve an intensive corrections order in the community.
She pleaded guilty earlier this year to two counts of extortion and one count of stalking.
Brisbane District Court was told that Earle was contacted by a 28-year-old company director on October 8, 2019 after seeing her escort service in an online advertisement.
The pair exchanged sexualised text messages – including naked photos from the man – before they agreed to meet the next day for a rate of $300 per hour.
Crown prosecutor James Bishop said the man paid for the hour and a $100 deposit but later decided not to meet, deleting Earle’s messages and blocking her number.
“Over the following month the defendant contacted the complainant by text message, initially demanding further money,” Mr Bishop said.
Earle claimed she missed out on a $1080 appointment because of the man’s cancellation.
Despite his apology and another $900 transfer, she continued to call him and eventually phoned his workplace.
She then threatened to tell his girlfriend and call police if he did not pay her another $500.
Mr Bishop said Earle also threatened to post the messages on Facebook and link it to his business after contacting the complainant using a different online alias.
She was arrested in December, telling police she believed the man owed her money.
On March 20, 2020, she targeted another 48-year-old man after he engaged her services.
The man declined to meet her and ended the sexualised phone call but eventually paid her $200 after she aggressively phoned him back.
A day later, Earle threatened to message the man’s family unless he transferred $450, saying the original transaction had faulted.
Judge Paul Smith noted she actually called the man’s wife.
“He agreed to transfer $500 … the defendant called again a short time later and said she was going to police as the transaction was fraudulent,” Mr Bishop said.
Earle’s defence barrister Michael Bonasia said his client would be at risk if she was sent to jail.
The court was told that Earle transitioned to a woman at age 20 but the move had left her isolated from her family.
Mr Bonasia said Earle had been a registered nurse for 17 years but her life took a turn for the worse in 2014 after she lost a good friend.
He said Earle was diagnosed with leukaemia in 2015 but the cancer was in remission.
Justice Smith sentenced her to 12 months jail, to be served as an intensive corrections order.