A British man who pretended to be pop star Justin Bieber to get children to strip and perform sexual acts online has received 14 years in prison for his crimes.
Robert Hunter, 35, pleaded guilty to 29 charges, including 15 of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity, the BBC reported
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Calling it the worst case of child Internet sex abuse he’d ever heard, Judge Peter Bowers said, “It represents callous, almost sadistic exploitation over a number of years preying on girls’ naivety who were undermined by their own behavior,” the BBC reported.
Through online sites, Hunter targeted young girls and boys by pretending to be Bieber. Police found 800 videos at his home after Hunter’s activities were brought to their attention by a girl in Tasmania. The videos were of children from all over the world.
The BBC said girls who thought they were talking to Bieber or another teenage boy took their clothes off on camera; boys were pulled into the sex scams when Hunter presented himself as a teen girl.
When the kids would try to get away, Hunter blackmailed them by threatening to put their photos online. He actually did so to one 12-year-old girl, putting revealing photos of her on Facebook; she slashed her arms after the photos were posted, the BBC reported.
Richard Bennett, who prosecuted the case, told The Mirror that Hunter used aliases from 2010 through 2012 to hide his identity
and target young girls.
“On each occasion he was able to disguise his true age and identity by the clever use of images of young boys or by pretending that his computer wasn’t working properly,” Bennett said. For instance, he would pretend the sound was broken so he could type to them and they wouldn’t hear his voice.
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