Â Blackamailer Jake “the Snake” Della-Vedova’s County Court appearance today was a sordid affair, with Prosecutors reading out an appalling tale of greed, crystal meth addiction and general woe involving him selling his sexual services to a man (whose name, occupation and any elective office he may hold or have held in the past have been suppressed by County Court order and will be vigorously enforced here in the comments section) and then blackmailing the man with a covert recording of their illegal encounter.
In a manner highly pleasing to the VEXNEWS editorial board, Jake the Snake’s barrister Mr Trevor Edwin Wraight specifically complained to the court of cruel media coverage “particularly on the internets(sic) where my client was referred to as ‘Jake the Snake.'” Our representative in court beamed with pride.
Many of the scribes in attendance – including the now completely head-shaven Iron Mike Bachelard of The Age (in receivership) who had a large Blackberry in his pocket but didn’t seem that pleased to see me – were barely able to contain their laughter when the defence counsel quoted from the two headed snake present on our story graphic on Sunday.Â He quoted the snake saying “Hiss! There’s just no honour among secret gay adulterous lovers these days.” We should have added in ‘rent-boy, ‘predator’ and ‘scumbag’ for good measure.
Jake’s counsel also complained that because of the media interest in his story of shame that he had been forced to delete his Facebook account, cutting off communication channels with friends. Boo hoo.
Judge Hannan seemed to find no trouble with our characterisation of events or of the defendant himself.Â
DIRTY DEEDS DONE DIRT CHEAP
Indeed, after the prosecutor had finished detailing Jakey’s sordid crimes, involving repeated SMS threats and demands for money, it made us think we’d probably gone in rather too easily on the crook. The threats made by Jake Della-Vedova of his victim suggested this crime was no playful frolic or a case of a lover scorned.
Jake the Snake had covertly recorded the victim and him in sexual congress for a marathon forty-six minutes. He had then hit up the victim for money in a “gay for pay” prostitution arrangement. The man paid a total of $400 for Della-Vedova for sex.
Della-Vedova went from being exploited poor young rent-boy to a particularly vicious, calculating and nasty predator determined to extract $15,000 from a man he deemed to have wealth and power.
His threats to pay or else he’d go to A Current Affair with the forty-six minute video recording grew ever more menacing and threatening including deadlines for payments and thuggery more in keeping with the mafia than a supposedly hard-working country boy hitting the big smoke. The court heard this ranged from the high-life of Rosati’s, a place frequented by many Liberals and Solomon Lew in the days when doctors permitted him to eat, to the rather less salubrious caf of Ikea in Richmond where it is understood Jake and his older lover supped on those tasty meatballs designed to remind one of Swedish life.
BRAVE VICTIM OF CRIME
His victim bravely went off to the Police when he realised the young menace was deadly serious in his menacing demands. The Police then busted Jake in a sting that would have done the FBI proud.Â
Jake Della-Vedova’s life of bludging off his parents and others also came out in court, ironically in an attempt to paint him more sympathetically.
Prior to moving to Melbourne, Jake ran a cafe in his parents’ home town with money provided by the folks and his grandma. He ran it into the ground, seemingly distracted by a lover who lived in Melbourne, where he eventually moved. Worringly, he also worked as a nanny and supervisor of children on overseas trips.Â
The court also heard that Jake had significant issues with a claimed crystal meth addiction that he has since beaten and a health issue that the court ordered suppressed.Â This was offered up by Jake’s wily counsel in a move to get him a lighter sentence.
OFF WITH HIS HEAD
Judge Hannan will pass sentence Monday morning. In order to comply with the court order that has been made suppressing identifying the occupation, current or past elective office or identity of the victim for a period of ten years, we have decided to close the comments section on this story. Please do not make any suggestions about the man’s identity in any other place on the site, we will delete it immediately and ban permanently any IP addresses who do this.
If you’d heard the tawdry nature of what the victim went through, even in the circumstances where he was illegally paying for sex with a guy many years his junior, you’d well understand that the order is in place for good reason.
Jake the Snake may be young but it doesn’t make any less of an evil, greed-motivated predator. There was no evidence that he had committed despicable crimes like this before but it didn’t take much imagination to think that he might have been preying on lonely sad and confused middle-aged blokes who could easily be blackmail victims.
The court also heard that Della-Vedova has other criminal charges pending, for theft of a pair of sunglasses.
Legal experts had told us they didn’t expect Della-Vedova would get a custodial sentence. We hope they’re wrong. The Prosecution suggested penalties up to as much as four years imprisonment which was attacked by Jake Snake’s lawyer as “irresponsible.” The judge then told Mr Wraight that barristers directing such unseemly language at each other was not appropriate.
A young bloke with the world at his feet, both folks who flew down to be with him through the ordeal. His Dad – a vet – told the court they wanted to take him home and help him rehabilitate. All very sad stuff but it didn’t change the fact that Della-Vedova had engaged in a particularly venal and horrible crime for which there should be a tough but fair penalty that will deter others from such predatory behaviour.