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A video depicting a teen boy stripped naked and then whipped by a gang of thugs went viral last week. Now, three people have been arrested.
The attack was not for some strange sexual role-play, but was instead a brutal act of revenge over a $20 debt allegedly owed by the boy's father, reports the New York Daily News.
New Jersey police have arrested three people believed to be in the video. A 19-year-old man was charged with robbery, conspiracy, and aggravated assault. Two others, including the suspected cameraman, were arrested on related charges.
The incident is believed to have happened in Newark, and shows the unidentified victim forced to take his own clothes off before he is whipped with a belt for about two minutes, reports the Daily News.
The victim can be heard screaming in pain as his torturers laugh and mock him. Video of the attack was posted online; it was viewed nearly 50,000 times.
While a $20 debt is mentioned in the video, it is not entirely clear if this was the sole motive for the beating.
Of the three charges that the primary suspect faces, robbery and assault should be fairly obvious. However, you may be wondering what conspiracy involves.
Typically, one thinks of conspiracies in assassination attempts and bank robberies. You might think of a group of men meeting in a dark place to discuss breaking into a bank and planning their getaway.
However, a conspiracy can involve pretty much any criminal plan that involves two or more people. If at least two people intend to engage in a criminal act, and take some affirmative step toward completing that act, they may be guilty of conspiracy -- regardless of whether the criminal plan was actually carried out.
In the teen's videotaped torture case, the three men may have committed conspiracy by planning the alleged revenge attack and then following through. The video was shot in August, but police only learned about it after it went viral last week, according to the Daily News.