Douglas Le, a 25-year-old high school teacher from San Jose, CA, has been charged in a catfishing investigation.
Le was a chemistry teacher at Gilroy High School.
Douglas Le Arrest
Police say Douglas Le posted as a teenage girl online in order to lure young boys into sending him explicit photos and videos online.
Le allegedly used photos of a porn star in order to lure the boys in and used the name “Rae Pelletier” when he did so. They say he then traded texts and images with boys from Gilroy High School on Facebook instant messenger.
He has been charged with nine counts of sending harmful matter to a minor, possessing matter depicting a minor engaging in or simulating sexual conduct, and annoying or molesting a child.
Deputy Dist. Atty. Jaron Shipp said, “This is a deeply-troubling example of why young people should be extremely wary of strangers that they decide to communicate with online.”
How Douglas Le Was Caught
Facebook notified the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that the Rae Pelletier account mayhave been used for inappropriate communications with a minor child. After that, the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and traced the account to Le.
His house was searched on April 26, 2016 and several of his hard drives and computers were seized.
He possibly faces eight years in prison.
Douglas Le Lawsuits
Los Angeles attorney Gloria Allred has filed lawsuits against the school district as a result of the Le case. They allege that the district failed to protect students by allowing him to work with students who he harassed and abused.
What Is Catfishing?
Catfishing, as popularized by the MTV TV show “Catfish,” is the practice of deceptively engaging in relationships online. In most cases participants on the show have been involved in relatiohsips with people they’ve never met in real life. Often those relationships have been based on complete lies and involve the use of fake photos.