YouTuber Norman Thavaud in custody for rape and corruption of minors


 "Norman makes videos" was placed in custody on Monday, December 5, as part of a preliminary investigation entrusted to the family protection brigade. He is currently being questioned about the corruption of minors and rape involving several young women.

Norman Thavaud, the third French YouTuber with nearly 12 million subscribers, was placed in custody on Monday, December 5, following a preliminary investigation opened by the Paris prosecutor's office and entrusted to the Family Protection Brigade (BPF). He is currently being questioned about the corruption of minors and rape, involving several teenage girls and young women. The Paris prosecutor's office confirms the custody to Libération. Some are fans of the star of the Web and accuse him of facts of a different nature. For several months, the BPF of the Paris police prefecture had been trying to cross-check the multiple scenarios described.

In August 2018, the name of Norman Thavaud, at this stage presumed innocent, was mentioned in the wave #BalanceTonYoutubeur following a tweet by Lucas Hauchard, alias Squeezie, the French number 1 (17.6 million subscribers to date), denouncing the inappropriate behavior of some videographers who "take advantage of the psychological vulnerability of young subscribers to obtain sexual intercourse". Drowned in the mass of testimonies, these accusations had remained a dead letter.

Six potential victims questioned by the justice system

On July 8, 2020, Maggie Desmarais, a Quebec fan aged 16 at the time of the facts, accused him on Instagram, screenshots of messages in support, of having manipulated her to obtain photos and videos of a sexual nature, sent by Snapchat, and of having exercised a psychological influence in 2018. He was 31 years old at the time. After filing a complaint in the summer of 2020, she testified openly and on video on the website Urbania, where she spoke of an "unhealthy little game of emotional attachment. I was young, I admired him, I fell easily into the panel." She also announced that she had been contacted by about thirty young women who had a similar experience with the YouTuber. According to information from Libération, five other potential victims were also questioned by the courts. With the exception of Maggie Desmarais, all may have been raped. Two were minors at the time of the incident.

"Norman makes videos" is a first-generation icon who grew up with the internet. Like Cyprien, Mister V or Hugo Tout Seul, he is a pioneer of the "podcast", this form of sketches staging the banalities of everyday life, adapted to the codes of the Internet and YouTube. After more than a decade of a solo career, his channel peaks at nearly 12 million subscribers and 2.7 billion views. He continues to this day to post videos, regularly reaching one million views, and was also performing on stage before Covid-19 interrupted the tour of his "Show of maturity". Maggie Desmarais was summoned to France by the BPF and crossed the Atlantic for a confrontation with Norman Thavaud, which should take place this Tuesday.

Reacting to the placement in police custody, the Webedia group, producer of the most important YouTube channels in France, announced "the suspension of its collaboration with the YouTuber Norman Thavaud".