A YouTuber who duped a homeless guy into eating toothpaste-filled Oreos in a heartless prank has been sentenced to prison.
A Barcelona court sentenced Kanghua Ren to 15 months in jail and also ordered him to pay $22,300 in compensation.
According to Spanish law, the prison time of the first-time offenders who are sentenced to less than 24 months can be suspended, The New York Times reported.
However, the court ordered to block Ren’s social media accounts on all platforms for the next five years.
Ren, who was behind YouTube channel RetSet, replaced the white filling in an Oreos packet with toothpaste and packed it again in a prank he filmed in January 2017.
The prankster then gave the packet to Gheorge L – a homeless guy he found on the streets of Barcelona.
Gheorge, 53, later revealed that he felt sick after eating the biscuits and threw up after five minutes. He thought he was going to die as he didn’t know what was present in them.
‘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 said in the video.
After his video sparked outrage, he again visited Gheorge to see if he liked the Oreos filled with toothpaste.
‘People exaggerate over jokes in the street (played) on a beggar, when surely if it’s done to a normal person they wouldn’t say anything,’ he said in the video featuring his second visit to the homeless Romanian man.
Ren wanted to spend a night on the street with him but had to leave after someone called the police.
After facing severe backlash, the vlogger gave Gheorge $380 and asked him to keep quiet about the incident. He also deleted the videos to ‘re-establish his image’ and ‘ingratiate himself with public opinion.’
The homeless man said he was never treated so badly by anyone in his entire life.
Ren, who was born in China but grew up in Barcelona, was charged with a ‘crime against moral integrity’ by the Spanish court.
The prosecutors were seeking a two-year prison time, besides restitution to Gheorge, for the video blogger.
Ren’s channel, which has more than one million subscribers, earned around $2,200 in advertising revenue, El Pais reported.
In his trial, Ren defended himself, saying: ‘I do things to mount a show: People like what is morbid.’
‘This was not an isolated act,’ judge Rosa Aragonés said while issuing the verdict, noting how Ren has previously fed sandwiches filled with cat feces to elderly people and schoolchildren in his other sick pranks.