TWO people have been jailed after blackmailing a North Yorkshire man who went on to take his own life.

Graham Cooper, 59, was found dead at his home in Pickering on January 8.

Officers investigating his death found documents detailing how he had been threatened by people who had demanded money from him.

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North Yorkshire Police launched an investigation and arrested Aysha Mullah aged 18, and Javed Ali, aged 19, on January 10. They were later charged with blackmail.

Mullah, of Olive Street, Bolton, and Ali, of Foxley Grove, Bolton, were each sentenced to five years in prison after pleading guilty when they appeared before York Crown Court on Wednesday.

Detective Inspector Darrin Knight, of North Yorkshire Police said: "This was a cold, calculated and callous act by both offenders against a retired gentleman who had done nothing to provoke such action.

"The sentences for both defendants clearly reflects the serious nature of their crime and were only mitigated by the fact that they made early guilty pleas.

"The victim was the sole care provider for his elderly father and their guilty pleas spared him from the trauma of a full trial."