A Florida man allegedly used popular video game Fortnite to lure at least 20 teenagers to his house for “sexual activities.”
According to Fox 5 Atlanta, 41-year-old Anthony Thomas has been “accused of using the popular video game Fortnite to lure teens for sexual activities,” where he offered a 17-year-old girl “money and gifts for sex.”
“Authorities tracked the victim down to the man’s home after her parents reported her missing,” Fox 5 Atlanta reported. “Deputies believe there are at least 20 other victims.”
Thomas is reportedly being charged with 22 counts of child pornography, “unlawful sexual activity with a minor,” and several other crimes.
“This case is disturbing not only because it involves child pornography, but also because a popular online game was used to communicate with the victim,” declared Attorney General Ashley Mood. “We have reason to believe there could be additional victims, and I am asking anyone with information about the recruiting of minors for child pornography, or any other type of sexual exploitation, to call law enforcement immediately.”
“Additionally, parents need to know that predators will use any means possible to target and exploit a child,” Mood continued. “I am asking parents and guardians to please make sure you know who your children meet online, and talk to them about sexual predators.”
In May, the NSPCC warned parents of the dangers of Fortnite‘s chat systems, which has led to children being contacted by strangers, and in September, a report claimed child predators were using Fortnite, among other apps and platforms, to lure victims.