Nameless hackers with the online protest group “Anonymous” said Tuesday night that they’ve identified another individual connected to a pornographic photo of a 15-year-old Canadian teen who committed suicide after publishing an anti-bullying video that went viral.
The individual named by Anonymous on Tuesday uses the nickname “Viper2323″ online, and is allegedly a 41-year-old man from Wisconsin who’s connected to numerous shady Internet communities known for trafficking child pornography. It is not yet clear if this individual is actually connected to the death of Amanda Todd, who committed suicide on October 10.
As before, Raw Story has chosen not to name the man after information provided by hackers earlier this week turned out to be wrong. Additionally, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) cautioned in a statement Tuesday night that there’s no solid evidence linking the first man Anonymous named to Todd’s death.
“The internet and social media were central to Amanda’s story and they are central to our investigation as well,” Sgt. Peter Thiessen, with the Lower Mainland District RCMP, said in the prepared text. “One of our big challenges right now, is false information that is being spread by people who appear to be trying to use Amanda’s story to do harm or make a profit.”
Police added that a photo alleged to be Todd’s naked body laying in a morgue, which was circulating around some of the Internet’s most seedy locals earlier in the week, is not authentic.
In another troubling development, the RCMP also warned that numerous fake charitable groups have sprung up online trying to take advantage of Todd’s story to drum up donations from unsuspecting well-wishers.
“Taking advantage of a family’s grief is despicable,” Thissen said. “We want to get the word out that there is one real account and anyone who is interested can make a donation at any [Royal Bank of Canada] branch to the Amanda Todd Trust Account.”
Appearing in court on Tuesday on an unrelated sexual assault charge, the first man named by Anonymous reiterated that he knew Todd, but declared that he was trying to help her identify the second man. “If I was a tormenter I’d be in police custody,” he said, according to The Vancouver Sun. “None of it’s true. I’m feeling betrayed.”
Reached by Raw Story, an RCMP official said that authorities are sorting through thousands of tips in the case and had no additional comment.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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