Word to the wise, if there is such a characteristic among young YouTubers: Think long and hard about that prank before you go with it. A YouTube numbskull is learning that lesson the hard way after being given a 15-month prison sentence and a $22,000 fine for giving a homeless man in Barcelona, Spain, Oreo cookies filled with toothpaste, causing the man to vomit.
Probably just as agonizing to the prankster is the judge’s order to shut down his YouTube and other social media accounts for five years.
It didn’t help his defense case that it was all on video. The 20-year-old Kanguhua Ren, known as ReSet on YouTube and who had 1.2 million followers, was found guilty of “violating the moral integrity” of the homeless man.
At the suggestion of one of his fans, Ren filmed himself in 2017 replacing the cream in the Oreos with toothpaste and putting them back in the package. He offered the cookies to many passersby on the streets of Barcelona in an effort to entertain his viewers. The homeless man, identified as 52-year-old Gheorge L., accepted the package and ate one.
The video showed Ren telling his audience that “Maybe I’ve gone a bit far. But look at the positive side. This will help him clean his teeth. I think he hasn’t cleaned them since he became poor.”
Ren reportedly earned almost $2500 from ads linked to the video, which has since been deleted.
Gheorge told a local reporter he threw up shortly after eating the cookie. The man had earlier in his life escaped the brutal dictatorship in Romania and told authorities he had spent time in a mental hospital there without being told why. He said he had never been treated so poorly while living on the street.
An immediate backlash followed Ren’s video post and so he took his camera and tried to apologize to Gheorge, offering him almost $400 to keep quiet about the episode.
“This was not an isolated act,” Judge Rosa Aragonés, indicated in her ruling. In other videos, Mr. Ren also displayed “cruel behaviors” toward “easy or vulnerable victims,” she added.
According to Spanish news outlets, Ren was born in China but has lived in Barcelona since childhood.
Ren is unlikely to serve jail time because prison terms are typically waived for first-time offenders committing non-violent crimes.
The Telegraph reported that the court heard that Ren once filled Oreo cookies with cat feces and gave them to children and elderly people, and clearly the judge is aware of the cruel on-camera misdeeds of the YouTube star. So perhaps the first-time offender mercy rule will be waived for this idiot and he’ll get a taste of being the butt of someone else’s hi-jinks in the slammer.
Hopefully he’s homeless after as well, so things come full circle for him. It’s not a joke to be homeless nor should homeless people be played with in a manner like this, especially when they’re actually out there struggling.
— Ahmad Durden (@Art__BaSel) June 2, 2019
Well deserved, you asshole. How did the world become a place where a lot of people considers this entertaining?
These youtubers and their audience: are they listening to Schubert, reading Stendhal, watching Fellini films?
— Alvaro Paiva-Bimbo (@apaivab) June 2, 2019
— Zobop Republic (@zobop_republic) June 2, 2019
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