Nina Agdal, a model and Logan Paul’s fiancé, is suing Paul’s upcoming opponent in a boxing match, Dillon Danis, in what might be one of the most publicized cases of nonconsensual image-based sexual abuse (colloquially, “revenge porn”) shared on social media.
Agdal is seeking at least $150,000 in damages, and alleges that Danis has violated the 2022 Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization, which contains “new provisions related to the dissemination of nonconsensual pornography.”
“As of this filing of this complaint, Danis has attacked Plaintiff through hundreds of posts containing vulgar and disparaging pictures, memes, and comments about her,” the lawsuit claims. “In one instance that gives rise to the claims asserted in this Complaint, Danis obtained and posted on his X [Twitter] account, without authorization, a sexually explicit photograph of Plaintiff that was taken and shared, without her consent, during a romantic encounter with a non-party more than a decade ago.”
The lawsuit also claims that although much of what Danis has posted are images in the public domain, “not all of the content Danis has used for his posts relating to Plaintiff had been publicly available prior to his posts.”
The lawsuit says that the photograph, which Danis posted on August 11 and reposted later that day, was eventually deleted after Misfits Boxing, which is promoting the fight between Paul and Danis, reached out to Danis and said the fight would be canceled unless he deleted it. On August 18, according to the lawsuit, Twitter also temporarily locked Danis’s account for violating its rules against posting or sharing privately produced “intimate media.”
The lawsuit also accuses Danis of hacking.
Specifically, the lawsuit states that a video shared by Danis was taken from her private Snapchat archive, that it hadn’t been shared anywhere else, and that a forensics company called Sourced Intelligence analyzed her account and believed her Snapchat was hacked.
“On August 28, 2023, Danis posted a video of Plaintiff in which she briefly discussed her desire for intimacy during a period of celibacy,” the lawsuit claims. “While Plaintiff self-recorded that video more than six years ago, she never sent that private video to anyone, and it was stored deep in her Snapchat archive, suggesting Danis had hacked Plaintiff’s personal account or had obtained the private video from someone who had done so. That video now has been viewed more than 135 million times.”
An affidavit filed by Agdal states that “Sourced Intelligence learned in its investigation that my Snapchat password had been changed on January 31, 2022; that on that day, there was a login to my Snapchat account from an iPad mini with an IP address traced to an address in Phoenix, Arizona; and that all of the data on my Snapchat had been downloaded at that time … upon learning all of this information, I knew that my account had been compromised because I was not responsible for those activities.” Her affidavit states she never owned an iPad Mini.
An affidavit by Quincy Bahler of Sourced Intelligence states that “I have concluded that Ms. Agdal’s Snapchat account was in fact compromised.” He adds that a video published by Danis was one of the ones found in her Snapchat data, and stated that he performed a “comprehensive search” for evidence of the video having been posted on the public internet prior to Danis’s tweets. “We have used facial recognition technology, manual and automated social media searches, and other technology to search for the video. To the best of our collective efforts and capabilities and understanding that the internet is vast and constantly evolving, we have not identified any instances of the video’s existence on the internet prior to the post by Mr. Danis.”
According to the lawsuit, since August 9, Danis’s Twitter following has grown from about 340,000 followers to about 850,000 followers.
The lawsuit is just the latest piece in a hot mess of a story involving YouTubers turned boxers, kayfabe gone too far, and the way Twitter is seemingly designed to reward the worst behavior imaginable. But it’s also an instructive lesson on what the law can do for the targets of nonconsensual sexual images. The reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act allows victims of image-based sexual abuse, including those whose intimate images were posted online non-consensually to bring a civil claim in federal court for up to $150,000. Once images like these are on the internet, they tend to spread quickly, and it can be extremely difficult to get them taken down.
Agdal’s lawyers and Danis did not respond to a request for comment.
If Logan Paul is exactly the kind of person you’ve tried avoid learning about since he became famous for posting videos of dead bodies from Japan’s suicide forest, here’s the current state of his empire:
He’s extremely rich and influential, but YouTube is now an ancillary business to his hugely successful energy drink, Prime (which he promotes alongside British YouTuber KSI), his podcast, and his boxing career, which began in 2018. A lot of the big YouTubers have gotten into boxing in the last few years, including Paul, his brother Jake, KSI, some people from FaZe clan, some guy called Salt Papi, and many other people you’ve never heard of but I assure you have big followings.
Many of these fights, including this upcoming match between Paul and Danis, are arranged by Misfits Boxing, a fight promotion company started by KSI and sponsored by Prime. As is tradition in most forms of combat sports, promotion for the fight involves a lot of shittalking. This mostly used to happen in press conferences, where fighters could talk shit face to face, bump their chests together, and barely get physical before security breaks up the interaction before the real fight. It’s great entertainment and it obviously helps hype up the fight if the audience thinks that the fighters actually hate and want to kill each other. Paul is also a professional wrestler with the WWE, where fictional, out of the ring drama is part of the entertainment, so this ritual of deep personal beefs is very familiar to him and his audience.
Today, of course, this ritual extends to social media, where fighters post meanly about one another like toxic teenagers. This is what Danis, an MMA fighter and Conor McGregor protégé, was doing. Part of it might be kayfabe, part of it might be trying to legitimately get under Paul’s skin and psych him out, but Danis settled on a very particular, mean, and now possibly illegal lane when he started targeting Paul’s fiancé.
Paul started dating Agdal in 2022, and announced their engagement last month in a YouTube video. Agdal is a Danish model who’s been featured in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue and appeared in a Super Bowl commercial for Carl’s Jr.
Agdal, like any normal human being, has had previous relationships prior to Paul, but those relationships were public because she’s dated famous people (like Leonardo DiCaprio), and is famous herself.
Danis has used this information to pick on Paul and suggest that his fiancé is promiscuous, but she is the one taking the brunt of the harassment. He’s done this by reposting the inexhaustible backlog of images that exist of her online: photographs from professional shoots, videos she has posted to social media, paparazzi-type photographs, and crude edited images. He’s also alluded to the fact that he has much more material that he dares not post, which he described as a “nuclear bomb.”
In a video earlier this week, Danis sits ringside with Adin Ross, and shows him his phone, supposedly about Agdal.
“Bro, what the fuck bro,” Ross says.
“I told you I wasn’t lying,” Danis says.
We don’t know what that might have been, but we do know that Danis has also shared pornographic images that he claimed were of Paul, but were not.
Yesterday, unless it is also part of very elaborate kayfabe, Danis’s shittalking resulted in actual legal consequences.
Samantha Cole and Jason Koebler contributed reporting.