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Indian-American spying on gay roomie to face more charges

world Updated: Oct 01, 2010 14:43 IST

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US prosecutors are considering whether to bring additional charges against two students, one of them an Indian-American, accused of driving a third student to suicide by posting his secretly streamed gay encounter on the Internet.

Indian American Dhanur Ravi, 18, accused of spying on his roommate Tyler Clementi, 18, who committed suicide by jumping off the George Washington Bridge last week, was arrested on Tuesday and charged with invasion of privacy and freed on $25,000 bail.

His friend Molly Wei, 18, of Princeton Junction, was arrested on Monday on privacy-invasion charges and released without bail.

"Now that two individuals have been charged with invasion of privacy, we will be making every effort to assess whether bias played a role in the incident, and, if so, we will bring appropriate charges," Middlesex county prosecutor Bruce J Kaplan said in a statement.

According to the New York Post, days after Rutgers University, New Jersey, student Clementi was spied on by Ravi, he reportedly reached out to a gay website to complain about it.

The messages -- written by someone identified as "cit2mo" and first cited by Gawker.com -- recount a webcam spying incident by a college roommate similar to the one that occurred to Clementi.

The tragedy was set in motion Sep 19 in Davidson Hall on Rutgers' idyllic Piscataway campus, where Clementi and his alleged tormentors, Ravi and his friend Molly Wei, started school a month ago.

Ravi activated the webcam on his computer and headed to high-school classmate Wei's room down the hall. Using Skype, the two remotely accessed the feed and saw Clementi engaged in a "sexual encounter" with another man, authorities said.

That's when they had their American Pie moment - callously sharing it with Ravi's network of friends on iChat.

It's unclear how many people saw the streaming video, but Ravi bragged about his sordid spying in a Twitter post later that same night, the Post said.

"Roommate asked for the room till midnight. I went into Molly's room and turned on my Web cam. I saw him making out with a dude. Yay," Ravi tweeted.

Last Wednesday, Clementi drove an hour from campus, up the New Jersey Turnpike to the bridge, leaving the car on the Jersey side.

The troubled teen posted his final grim message on his Facebook page and then walked more than a mile onto the span to leap to his death.