Nashville-based group accuses people online of pedophilia - WSMV Channel 4

Nashville-based group accuses people online of pedophilia

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

A Nashville-based citizen activist group is posting online the photographs and personal information of people whom the group accuses of being pedophiles.

Many of the people on the site have never been charged with a sex crime.

The underground group, which calls itself Evil Unveiled, does research in Internet chat rooms and forums often devoted to sinister, sexual fantasies such as pedophilia.

The group records that information, stores it and begins to track the people who are posting only using nicknames, waiting for them to reveal personal details.

"And you just keep collecting information until they accidentally post their email they didn't mean to post. And then it all falls together, and this is the real person behind the nickname," said Victoria, the creator of the group, who asked us to conceal her identity.

Victoria said she knows the website where the information is revealed, http://evilunveiled.com, is controversial. Members of the group aren't professional investigators or law enforcement officers, but they are making serious accusations for anyone to read.

Several people on the website are from Tennessee, including a realtor in Nashville and a man in Sevierville.

"Do you worry that some of this information might be wrong, that you're putting the wrong people on the Web?" asked Channel 4 I-Team chief investigative reporter Jeremy Finley.

"No, I don't. We have a lot of checks and balances, a lot of different ways to prove in a court of law that the information on the site is correct," Victoria said.

One person whom Evil Unveiled accused of being a pedophile called himself "Wolfy" in forums and chat rooms.

Victoria said after awhile, she began to see Wolfy was posting personal information and showing a picture of himself.

The first photo "Wolfy" posted was a picture that appeared in a local newspaper of Albert Rankin, a man once involved with Occupy Nashville and who did several interviews with the local media.

"I look like a boss. This was in the newspaper," said one chat room post by Wolfy.

Wolfy later posted another picture of himself, again showing a photo of Rankin.

A Channel 4 I-Team investigation found that Rankin's MySpace page, email address and Skype account all contain the word 'Wolfy.'

Rankin said "Wolfy" is his nickname, and he posts in forums and chat rooms using the name "Wolfy."

"Wolfy is a nickname I had as a kid and it just kind of stuck," Rankin said.

But Rankin said the "Wolfy" making the pedophilia statements isn't him, and he said Evil Unveiled has wrongly identified him.

"I'd have to say I'm a little confused. If they're targeting me specifically, I'm not sure why. I'll have to look into this. That's a really serious allegation," Rankin said.

Rankin agreed to speak with the Channel 4 I-Team via Skype from where he now lives in Oklahoma City.

The Channel 4 I-Team told Rankin we wanted to speak with him about his time spent with Occupy Nashville in order to confirm that the person on Skype was indeed the same person who was associated with Occupy Nashville.

The Channel 4 I-Team then told Rankin he was listed on the Evil Unveiled website.

Rankin said he'd never heard of the site, but he did answer our questions about "Wolfy."

Finley held up printed pictures of what Wolfy posted online.

"This person (Wolfy) actually posted pictures of himself. And these are they pictures that he posted. This is you," Finley said.

"Oh yeah, that's a picture of me," Rankin said.

"And that's you," Finley said, referencing another photograph. "So is this you posting in these chat rooms?"

"Uh, no. I've put my pictures out all over the Internet," Rankin said.

The Channel 4 I-Team also asked Rankin about the fact that Wolfy wrote about personal details in his life, including that he was in a military family, that he was in the Army and that he had spent 90 days in a tent for Occupy Nashville.

When Wolfy wrote that information, he also stated that he was a pedophile.

Rankin said while all the information about his military history and involvement with Occupy Nashville was accurate about his own life, he denied writing it in the forum and stated he never wrote that he was a pedophile.

Rankin said he had never visited the chat room where those statements were made.

"If this isn't you, then this person has a whole lot of personal information about you," Finley said.

"It's not hard to emulate somebody if you talk to them for a while," Rankin said.

On the day we interviewed Rankin, records from a chat room show Wolfy was posting again.

Wolfy made a disturbing statement about pedophilia, and then 30 minutes later, Wolfy posted that he had to get rest soon because he was doing an interview for NBC.

Rankin said when Wolfy was writing about his interview, that was indeed him posting.

But he said the other Wolfy talking about pedophilia just 30 minutes earlier wasn't him.

"I've told you before, I've used the name 'Wolfy' on various places, but I also use other names as well. There are plenty of places that I peruse on the Internet," Rankin said.

Rankin said he suspects someone is trying to slander him and that other members of Occupy Nashville have had their nicknames stolen in order to post on news websites in an effort to discredit the activists.

"Honestly, I guess if they're (Evil Unveiled) trying to make the Occupy movement look bad, that's one way to do it," Rankin said.

But Victoria, with Evil Unveiled, said she had no problem with Occupy Nashville. Victoria said her only battle is with people she believes are pedophiles and is ready to fight in the courtroom if need be.

"You know, at some point, you could be sued. You know someone could say, 'This isn't true,'" Finley said.

"Absolutely," Victoria said.

A representative for Occupy Nashville did confirm that as soon as members read the Evil Unveiled posting about Rankin, they went to speak with him about it, but Rankin was suddenly missing from Legislative Plaza and never returned.

That representative said they were told Rankin had left to take a job out of town.

The Channel 4 I-Team wanted to ask Rankin about that and if he planned to take any legal action against the website, but he did not respond to our follow-up email.

Victoria said the group has received no word from Rankin asking to remove his profile from the Evil Unveiled website.

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