Popular fitness influencer and reality TV star Kalani Lenehan impersonated by pervert soliciting teen girls for nudes

A popular fitness influencer and reality television star has issued a warning after discovering someone has been impersonating him and soliciting explicit images from underage girls.

In March, Kalani Lenehan began receiving messages from women who thought they had been chatting with the 22-year-old on Snapchat.

Mr Lenehan, a professional bodybuilder who took out the top prize on Network 10 series Gladiators in January, was horrified to hear what his impostor had been doing.

“From what I’ve been told, the whole ploy was using my photos and videos to pretend to be me, then messaging women – including underage girls, from what I hear – to get explicit photos.

“This person has even hopped on calls with girls. It sounds like a young Australian guy, apparently, so I guess it’s easy to believe it could be me.”

When he first became aware of the fake Snapchat, Mr Lenehan posted a message to his Instagram warning his fans of the situation.

“I had dozens and dozens of messages from women who thought it had been me they were communicating with,” he said. “I’ve heard from countless people who’ve been duped.”

Mr Lenehan said he felt violated, but his primary concern was with those who had been affected.

“I really feel for the people this has happened to because a lot of them seemed to be underage. Young people are so impressionable and vulnerable.”

He immediately reported the account to Snapchat via the app and also submitted a lengthy and detailed 1000-word complaint via its website.

Shockingly, he received a response from the platform that an investigation had found no wrongdoing.

“It was definitely disappointing,” he said of the social media giant’s handling of the situation.

“Especially a platform that is a big thing for creators now. A lot of creators use Snapchat primarily over everything else now. So, you would think it would have some sort of customer service or at least a team that takes things like this seriously.

“It could’ve been handled a lot better. I was hoping after the first formal report I made that it would be read and acted on straight away.”

Unfortunately, he’s no stranger to being impersonated online with countless fake profiles on dating apps and social media profiles popping up over the years.

“It’s happened to me ever since I’ve been on social media,” Mr Lenehan said.

“People lift my photos of Instagram and make profiles and talk to people, pretending to be me. That’s weird in itself, but this had a whole new level to it.”

The dodgy account disappeared on Tuesday but it’s unclear whether Snapchat removed it or the impostor deleted it over the growing attention from Mr Lenehan’s followers.

But within an hour, another fake user using the same stolen profile photo had popped up.

“I’m guessing it’s the same guy,” Mr Lenehan said.

He chronicles his fitness journey across multiple platforms and has amassed a sizeable following over the years, but his appearance on Gladiators boosted his profile.

“It’s a family show, so I was suddenly reaching a newer audience – a younger demographic. Kids come into where I work with their parents, or they see me on the street and say hello, and they know me from Gladiators.”

In the wake of the saga, Mr Lenehan wants his fans to know that the actions of the impostor are the “total opposite” of his character.

“That’s something I would not do – being pushy with girls, being aggressive and asking for explicit material. With my content, I always try to provide a very positive image.

“This is my job so I take social media very seriously. I’m also a pretty private person when it comes to relationships, so those aren’t conversations I’m having.”

While Mr Lenehan is active on social media, he has only one official profile on each platform – including Snapchat. Anyone communicating with another user is being misled, he said.

“Be really smart and careful,” Mr Lenehan said. “I only use my official accounts and no others.

“Also, just because someone has a following, don’t let them take advantage of that, because I’m sure there are a lot of people out there that leverage their profile in ways like that.”

News.com.au has approached Snap Inc for comment.

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