Kai Ranaglia-Nelson, an 18-year-old Coolidge resident, was arrested at his home Wednesday morning by Pinal County Sheriff’s officers, after a four-month investigation initiated by the New South Wales Police Force in Australia.
Australian authorities started to investigate Ranaglia-Nelson, after a 13-year-old and 14-year-old girl contacted authorities. Detectives learned inappropriate photos were exchanged between the victims and Ranaglia-Nelson.
Ranaglia-Nelson then allegedly threatened to disseminate the images if the girls did not continue sending photos.
In one case, Ranaglia-Nelson allegedly disseminated one of the pictures of a victim after she stopped sending him pictures. Detectives in Australia discovered Ranaglia-Nelson was residing in Pinal County and contacted investigators, said a release from the sheriff’s office.
The Pinal County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) tracked down Ranaglia-Nelson. He later admitted to detectives his involvement in extorting the victims.
“This is an important reminder to monitor your children’s social media account and know who they are talking to,” said Sheriff Mark Lamb. “It is so important to talk to your children tonight about the dangers of sharing inappropriate photos with anyone. We see cases all the time where those victims get extorted for the photos they send. This type of crime happens not just locally, but internationally.”
Ranaglia-Nelson is charged with two counts of sexual extortion. This is still an ongoing investigation. There could be more victims and the suspect could face additional charges.