Definition of shake someone down in English:

shake someone down

phrasal verb

North American
  • Extort money from someone.

    • ‘I knew what he was doing: he was shaking me down.’
    • ‘They even came by his desk and shook him down for the money.’
    • ‘And our concerns that perhaps some of the princes were shaken down by blackmail to provide funds that have fueled a very large-scale international terrorist network.’
    • ‘It's all about the government inserting itself, and shaking us down financially, in every conceivable area of our lives.’
    • ‘But you don't want to see them come alongside your boat, head up out of the water with that big fish-eatin’ grin, to shake you down for a snack.’
    • ‘When I told them I didn't have any money coming in, they used to shake Colleen down after they'd seen me leave the apartment.’
    • ‘How about taking on the textbook industry and their conspiracy to shake the American public down?’
    • ‘And the responsibility stops there, and the solution to every wrong created in the society is not to rush into a court and see if we cane shake somebody down for a bunch of money?’
    • ‘She didn't shake me down for lunch money or even touch me.’
    • ‘They took him to the station and shook him down for a $40,000 bribe.’