An American TikToker who teaches English in Thailand was recently arrested over accusations he sexually abused a minor and recorded the acts.
About the TikToker: Luke Rockwell, 29, is an influencer known as “Teacher Luke” with over 1.3 million followers and over 525 million views on TikTok. Originally from Florida, Rockwell had been teaching English in Thailand and creating TikTok content targeting young English students.
On Sunday, Rockwell was arrested at his luxury apartment near Phra Khanong Canal and taken into custody in Bangkok following a complaint from the purported victim’s mother.
About the accusations: According to the mother’s complaint, her 16-year-old daughter met Rockwell through social media about five months ago. The girl revealed the alleged encounters to her mother after she experienced abdominal pains, and subsequent tests revealed that she had contracted sexually transmitted infections. The revelation prompted the mother to file a police report on Aug. 29.
“My daughter had been messaging Teacher Luke for months using my phone,” the mother told the Daily Mail
. “She deleted the messages after they chatted.”
About the victim: The alleged victim, who had previously attended a school where Rockwell taught, had limited local friends. She was described as “vulnerable and troubled” by her mother, who had adopted her at a young age.
Rockwell reportedly told the victim she had to keep their relationship a secret until she turned 18, assuring her that he “loved her and would let her come live with him when she’s no longer a minor.”
Ongoing investigation: Rockwell’s charges include engaging in sexual activity with a teenager over 15 but under 18 years old. Police investigations are ongoing, with authorities working to gather all pertinent information in this case. If found guilty, Rockwell could face up to 10 years in prison and about $560 in fines.
Rockwell also faced controversies in 2021
after claiming in a viral video that the Philippines is one of the most racist countries in the world.