Pastor accused of sex-related extortion against UNR student

Mugshot courtesy Washoe County jail
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - A Reno pastor is being investigated by police at the University of Nevada, Reno for a case of extortion involving a UNR student.

40-year-old Santino Cantalupo faces arraignment November 13, 2018 after being arrested November 1 for extortion, soliciting prostitution and furnishing a minor with alcohol.

Cantalupo is a founder of Imago Dei Church, according to the church's website.

According to a probable cause declaration obtained from Reno Justice Court, UNR Police say Cantalupo contacted the victim through a dating app using a false name, and offered to buy alcohol for her on two occasions, in September and October 2018, in exchange for sexual favors, leading to the prostitution charge.

Police say Cantalupo met with the minor once in late September on the UNR campus and gave her alcohol, though there was no sexual activity as the result of that visit.

Police say Cantalupo told her if she didn't have sex with him, he would send screen shots of their text messages to her father, which caused her to be distressed, as she believed the text messages to be private and not meant to be shared. Police say Cantalupo continued those threats over subsequent text messages, leading to the extortion charge.