A US man posing as Justin Bieber has been arrested on suspicion of soliciting nude photos from a nine-year-old California girl.
Bryan Asrary of Massachusetts was taken into custody on December 18 and could face local charges including possession of child pornography, Los Angeles County sheriff's officials said.
The victim, who is now 11, told investigators she was viewing Bieber's Instagram page when she received a message from another user who said he knew the pop star and could arrange a text meeting.
'Excited at the proposition to text with Justin Bieber, the young victim accepted the offer and was directed to set up an account on the social media site KIK,' the department said in a news release.
Asrary, 24, then posed as Bieber on KIK and demanded nude photos from the girl and threatened harm if she did not cooperate, officials said.
Believing him to be Bieber, the victim sent nude selfies and videos and then deleted the texts.
In 2016, Asrary contacted the victim again twice and threatened to put the previous photos online if she did not send more, authorities said, but the girl told her mother, who contacted police.
Detectives served several search warrants for information from social media sites and were able to identify the suspect who later confessed to extorting the victim for sexual images and videos in an interview, officials say.
He also implicated himself in similar crimes against other young girls throughout the country, but had no actual connection to Bieber, they said.
His bail was set at $20,000.
In addition to the local charges, Asrary could face multiple charges in California, including extortion, manufacturing child pornography and communicating with a minor with the intent to commit a sex act, authorities say.