The celebrity photo scandal has taken a shocking turn after lawyers for Olympic gymnast McKayla Maroney demanded the removal of their 18-year-old client’s nude photos from various pornography websites, claiming that she was underage at the time they were taken.
Maroney, who originally denied her identity in the photos, was one of the youngest victims targeted in the hacking incident. Her legal team is looking to slap child abuse charges on anyone who has posted or shared explicit photos of the teenager.
In addition, anyone who is caught downloading or viewing sexual images of a minor can be found guilty of child abuse under U.S. and U.K. law.
The hackers could now face charges for distributing child pornograpy in addition to federal charges including identity theft and accessing a protected computer without the proper authority.
Porn.com was reportedly issued a letter from Maroney’s attorney stating the circumstances, and they removed the images immediately.
Approximately 400 personal photos were leaked onto various media platforms of more than 100 celebrities. The alleged attackers are speculated to be associated with a gang that has widespread content distribution.
It has been confirmed that the FBI is involved and has been working vigilantly on the case.
“The FBI is aware of the allegations concerning computer intrusions and the unlawful release of material involving high profile individuals and is addressing the matter,” said an FBI spokeswoman on Monday.