Justin Bieber may have a sex tape scandal brewing, and the release of an explicit video with girlfriend Sofia Richie could lead to a giant payday for the person leaking it — or big jail time.
Twitter exploded this week with the possibility of a sex tape showing Bieber and his new girlfriend during a trip to Mexico. There were claims that the video was making its way to the internet, the Metro reported.
The reports had fans buzzing, with a trending hashtag on Twitter related to the potential video. Some fans were excited at the possibility, while others were concerned about what it could do to the pop star’s image and the potential violation of his privacy rights.
While details of the alleged sex tape are still light, and there is not yet any confirmation that it actually exists, past reports indicate that the market for a legitimate celebrity sex tape is potentially enormous. When there were reports that an explicit video of Kylie Jenner and her boyfriend Tyga was going to hit the internet, insiders said they could fetch at least $10 million for it.
That was supposedly what Vivid Entertainment head Steve Hirsch was offering, OK! magazine reported back in September. Hirsch was the one responsible for Kim Kardashian’s sex tape release, and he reportedly saw the same potential in her younger sister.
But the payday could have been even bigger. Hollywood Life reported that Tyga wanted to hold out for more money and believed he could score even higher than $10 million.
“Tyga enjoys making love to Kylie now that she’s 18. That’s his girl and she’s everything to him. He understands that the industry wants to see them get down and dirty in one big explosive sex tape. He’s down to do that, but he wants more than $10 million… For Tyga to do this, he’s looking for some serious meal tickets and knows he and Kylie can command way more than $10 million. He thinks that offer should be doubled for how he’s willing to get down on film.”
But if a Justin Bieber sex tape does exist, it could also lead to big consequences for whoever might be holding or shopping it around. Depending on how and when the video may have been filmed, it could be a matter for federal investigators.
The FBI and other agencies have shown in the past few years that they take the unauthorized release of nude pictures and video very seriously, with big consequences for those who get caught.
That was also the case last week, when someone hacked the website of actress and comedian Leslie Jones and published pictures allegedly showing her nude. The hack is now under investigation by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement, a division of the Department of Homeland Security.
And when people who steal and leak nude photos and video have been caught, the punishments can be harsh. Jared James Abrahams, a 20-year-old from California who hacked into the computer of Miss Teen USA Cassidy Wolf, received an 18-month sentence for a scheme to steal nude photos and then extort his victims.
Authorities said Abrahams was able to gain access to the webcams of his victims, snapping pictures of them in the nude and then threatening to post those photos online unless the women sent him more nude pictures or “performed” for him on Skype, the New York Daily News reported.
As the report noted, Abrahams had a scheme that netted a large number of victims.
“The computer whiz had a stable of a dozen young women, all in their late teens or early 20s, whom he regularly contacted and threatened. He told federal prosecutors he’d controlled up to 150 different laptops of his various victims.”
It is not yet clear if a Justin Bieber sex tape could net a similar punishment, as it’s not known how the video was taken or obtained — or if it even does exist. But should an explicit video somehow hit the internet, it’s clear that federal investigators would take it more seriously than Bieber’s fans on Twitter.
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