A popular Quebec YouTuber who touched the ears of his victims and threatened them to make his audience laugh exceeded the limits by intimidating two strangers, ruled a judge by imposing a criminal record on him for his lack of empathy.
“He did not learn anything from his experience and from the judicialization of his case […] He is using the event to boost his visibility and popularity by instrumenting the event and the judicial process, ”said judge Katia Léontieff in her decision rendered this afternoon at the municipal court of Montreal.
The magistrate did not mince words to describe the “immature” behavior of Lamine Zidani, known by the alias “Lamz” on Youtube, where he is followed by more than 450,000 people.
Photo Chantal Poirier
Because the “provocateur” crossed the line in October 2018 for a joke that escalated as he touched the ears of strangers against their will. He then made threats of violence against a student and a librarian at Dawson College in Montreal.
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But despite the accusations of assault and threats against him, the 24-year-old YouTuber has not made much progress, argues the magistrate, noting several videos published from where Zidani continues his gags by undermining “the physical integrity and respect for its victims ”.
“Other videos show that the offender trivializes his actions, that he despises the student complainant, that he ridicules him, that he has no respect for the legal process which he blithely mocks in his videos She also noted.
“Why am I here pissing myself off when I touched the guy’s ear?” “, He said in one of his videos after failing to appear in court.
He subsequently failed to appear at court a second time, as well as at the police station where he was to attend every Tuesday as he had undertaken in subsequent conditions on six occasions.
Yet posting those videos was nothing more or less than cyberbullying, she adds.
“He films the reactions of the two victims without their consent. […] This had the effect of exposing the student victim to ridicule and to mock her in a context where she perceived that she was deprived of the means to put an end to the insult, ”recounts the judge.
Lack of empathy and trivialization
If the nature of the actions did not merit a prison sentence, his trivialization of events and his lack of empathy towards his victims will have earned him a criminal record as well as 80 hours of community service.
“He is a YouTuber, a provocateur, and his goal is obviously to create a reaction among the victims to generate content to publish on his channel. Its goal was to push certain limits, ”said the judge.
He will also not have the right to allude in any way whatsoever to the event or to the victims on his various platforms to prevent him from profiting from his offenses.
“No hint? », Reacted the young man, who remained impassive throughout the reading of the decision.
They will also need to take a cyberbullying awareness program.