Suspect Involved In “Sextortion” Scheme Charged After 17-Year-Old Committed Suicide


Authorities say that a teenager committed suicide after a California man took his money and warned that he would post his sexually explicit pictures and recordings in a “sextortion” plan.

On Thursday, 25-year-old Jonathan Kassi was apprehended in Los Angeles and booked into the Santa Clara County Jail. San Jose police say that he has been charged with extortion and attempted disorderly conduct.

Kassi is accused of acting as if he was a teenage girl named “Emily Smith” so that he could trick boys into providing him with sexual images and recordings. Authorities say that he do so on multiple social media platforms using fake accounts with the name “kassijonathan,” as well.

Kassi is said to be involved in the “sextortion” of Ryan Last, 17, who died by suicide. This came after Kassi acted as if he was a teenage girl and persuaded him to send a racy photo of himself online, police say.

After Last sent the picture, Kassi threatened to send the picture to his friends and family unless Last gave him $5,000. Police say that Kassi got the blackmail money from the boys and sent it to someone else in Ivory Coast in Africa.

Last provided Kassi with more money, but he wanted more, resulting in Last committing suicide last spring.

This week, the FBI sent out a warning about the rise in teenage boys being targeted online and extorted for money subsequent to being tricked into providing scammers sexually explicit images.

At least 3,000 children, primarily boys between the ages of 14 and 17, have been victims of operations that are related to over a dozen of suicides this year.

On Monday, Kassi will appear in court for the first time in order to enter a plea.



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