Ian Rylett, 55, the owner of YouTube’s popular teen channel SevenAwesomeKids was arrested for “lewd and lascivious molestation” of a young girl who creates videos for him. YouTube franchise SevenAwesomeKids has been a go-to destination for tween and teen girls since 2008. The franchise’s seven channels have a combined 178 million subscribers, with the largest channel being SevenSuperGirls bringing in 9 million of those subscribers. SeveneAwesomeKids have 20+ girls making videos who range in the ages of 8 – 18 years old who are paid to star in YouTube video that are produced by Ian Rylett.
The channel was updated daily until Rylett was arrested in Florida back in August for “lewd and lascivious molestation” following an incident with one of the YouTube stars.
According to the arrest warrant obtained by Buzzfeed News, on August 16, Rylett allegedly verbally abused the victim, who is under the age of 16, demanded that she undress in front of him, and forced her to “practice wrapping her breasts down, to make them appear smaller for the video shoot.” The victim also alleged that Rylett touched her breasts, fondled her, and attempted to forcibly remove her underpants, threatening “to use the contract to fine her if she did not comply with his demand.”
“I was telling my mom two years ago that, if this was a real entertainment business — you know, with rules — I’d report him in an instant,” one performer told Buzzfeed News. “But I can’t because there’s nobody here to help me.”
YouTube demonitized the channels soon after finding out about the arrest. In a statement to Buzzfeed News, YouTube wrote: “We take safety on YouTube very seriously. We work closely with leading child safety organizations and others in our industry to protect young people. When we’re made aware of serious allegations of this nature we take action, which may include suspending monetization, or, upon conclusion of an investigation, terminating the channel.”
According to Buzzfeed, at Ian’s arraignment in August the 55-year-old man pleaded not guilty and is expected to stand trial this year.