ESPN’s Shelley Smith is reporting that Ronaiah Tuiasosopo confessed to a source that he was behind Lennay Kekua and that Manti Te’o was an unknowing victim.Smith spoke with a woman who says that she became close to Tuiasosopo through church and that he gave a “tearful confession” to the hoax. The friend was asked what Tuiasosopo said to her about the hoax.
“[Tuiasosopo said] ‘We are the ones, my cousins and I are the ones, who are behind this whole shenanigans that are going on with Manti. Dating online, calling, emailing, impersonating a girl’s voice’…At first he said it was a game and then it got serious. And serious to the point where he had to come along with other people. Lie, after another lie, after another lie…He told me Manti was not involved at all. He was a victim.“
ESPN also spoke with two people who claim Tuiasosopo performed the same hoax, using the same fake woman, on their cousin four years ago. In fact, one claims that Tuiasosopo not only used the name “Lennay Kekua” but the pictures used with Te’o of “Lennay” were the same pictures used on the cousin in 2008.
These are the same two people who discussed a fake Lennay Kekua back in December on Twitter [you can see that conversation here]. They say that the conversation was just a joke amongst themselves because they knew Kekua was not real and that they had tried unsuccessfully to reach out to Te’o.
In addition, here is the woman, whose pictures were used by Tuiasosopo. She also claims she is a victim of this hoax.
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