A YouTuber Has Pleaded Guilty To Child Porn After Coercing Underage Fans To Send Him Nudes

Austin Jones faces up to 20 years in prison for the crime.

A YouTuber has pleaded guilty to child pornography charges after coercing six underage fans to send him sexually explicit videos.

Austin Jones has been active on YouTube since 2007, earning over 500,000 subscribers for his acapella covers of 2000s emo songs.

The 26-year-old was arrested in June of 2017 and charged with two counts of felony child pornography, and on Friday, pleaded guilty to one count.

According to the Washington Post, his 27-page plea agreement includes conversations with six 14 and 15-year-old girls carried out on Facebook Messenger and iMessage from 2010 to 2017 – he received 66 videos and photos from these six girls, and tried to encourage 30 more to do the same.

He offered the teenagers “modelling opportunities” in exchange for nude photos, and told one that stripping for a video would “prove” she was his biggest fan. The Chicago Tribune reports that many of the girls were clearly hesitant as Jones pushed them to perform increasingly explicit acts.

In 2015, a 15-year-old girl set up a petition asking for Jones to be removed from a tour lineup, alleging that he “pressured” young fans to send him videos of him twerking.

“Austin Jones is taking advantage of his fame,” she wrote. “These kinds of actions are NOT okay and should not be taken lightly.”

Jones ended up leaving the tour after the petition racked up over 9,000 signatures, but posted a video entitled ‘Setting The Record Straight’ in which he denied any wrongdoing.

“I used to ask fans for twerking videos – yes, twerking the dance move. It’s not something I’m proud of, it’s not something I think is right, and I should have done it,” he says in the clip.

Nothing ever went further than twerking videos. There were never any nudes, never any physical contact. It never happened.

Jones’ lawyers say that after his arrest, he entered treatment to “better understand the root of inappropriate, negative behaviours he had engaged in as well as to process underlying traumas that he had yet to address in any healthy, complete way”.

He will be sentenced on May 3, and faces from five to 20 years in prison.

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