Popular Adult Film Star Accused Of Distributing Child Sex Abuse Material Over Telegram

A popular adult film star was arrested and accused of possessing and distributing hundreds videos showing child sex abuse through the encrypted chat app Telegram, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York announced Friday.

Justin Heath Smith, 43, known professionally as Austin Wolf, is charged with distribution and receipt of child pornography and possession of child pornography, after federal authorities said they linked him to an anonymous Telegram account that shared child sex abuse materials.

Investigation into Smith began in April when FBI agents seized and searched a cellphone belonging to a different Telegram user, according to federal complaint.

Adult film actor Austin Wolf attends the 2019 GayVN Awards show at The Joint inside the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on January 21, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Adult film actor Austin Wolf attends the 2019 GayVN Awards show at The Joint inside the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on January 21, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Gabe Ginsberg via Getty Images

Authorities’ search of the phone revealed the Telegram user had communicated with someone using the screen name “Anon Anon.” The two accounts had exchanged approximately 200 videos and images of child sexual abuse between March 24 and March 28, per the complaint.

The Telegram user told authorities that he and Smith had previously met in person and they gave a physical description of “Anon Anon” that matched the adult film star.

Agents then used the Telegram user’s account to covertly communicate with “Anon Anon,” or Smith. “Anon Anon” mentioned that he was traveling for work on April 14 and would return almost a week later, according to the complaint. A review of U.S. Customs and Border Protection records revealed that Smith was traveling between those dates.

Authorities executed a search of Smith’s Manhattan apartment after “Anon Anon” claimed that he kept child sexual abuse material on a computer in his room, according to the complaint. Law enforcement recovered an SD card in the computer room that contained about 200 videos of child sexual abuse.

The material allegedly depicted children as young as infants, according to the complaint.

Wolf has nearly 800,000 followers on Instagram and millions of followers on X, and was also popular on OnlyFans. In 2018, he was reportedly the top gay porn star on Pornhub. At the time, he’d gone viral for an explicit video he made with an off-duty Delta Airlines flight attendant. 

Telegram, a messaging platform, has been found to host noxious content. A recent investigation by The Washington Post found several instances of groups that engage in illegal behavior or violate the platform’s policies, including users who post child sex abuse material, videos of corpse desecration and images of minors self-harming.

The platform responded by stating that deterring these groups is an urgent priority.

“Child abuse and calls to violence are explicitly forbidden by Telegram’s terms of service,” Remi Vaughn, spokesperson for the communication platform told the Washington Post. “Telegram has moderated harmful content on our platform since its creation.”

Need help? Visit RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Online Hotline or the National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s website.