Yuliana Avalos, a part-time model and mother, filed the hefty class-action suit after claiming her photos were used on at least 200 fake profiles, even though she had never signed up for the site. The suit alleges thousands of other fake profiles using photos of models and celebrities also exist as part of an international criminal ring. And one victim of the ring, according to Avalos, was 70-year-old Yonkers resident Al Circelli.
In 2010, Avalos says Circelli connected with a profile for a woman named "Aisha" that used photographs of her. Circelli ended up sending over $50,000 to Ghana for "Aisha." “The woman who he thought he was talking to was begging him for money and he finally went broke,” Avalos told the Daily News. “He had to borrow money from his son. He went bankrupt. He lost everything. He was so ashamed that he killed himself.”
The suit, filed in Manhattan federal court on Friday, seeks $1 billion in punitive damages, $500 million in compensatory damages and an order for the company to screen overseas IP addresses.