Lailani Muniz, a renowned trans rights and HIV activist, was arrested and charged in New York City for allegedly soliciting a minor.
The 39-year-old was caught in a predator sting carried out by NY Creeps Spotlight, a non-profit child safeguarding organization that exposes adults who wish to abuse children. During the sting operation, a man identified as FM posed as a 14-year-old called Josh.
According to the criminal complaint, Muniz began messaging Josh in March and had acknowledged the supposed teenager's young age before soliciting oral sex. The complaint states that Josh identified as a girl, but FM actually posed as a teenage boy. "I'm about to shower brb. Np. What you looking for and into. Are u cutting school and looking for company lol. Are you into guys and trans girls? Any xxx pixs," Muniz responded to Josh, as per the criminal complaint. In another message to Josh, the trans rights activist said she can't front. "I am nervous."
Creeps Spotlight posted the screenshots of the messages on its Facebook page.
Arranged a Meet-Up
Muniz arranged for a meet-up with Josh at an apartment building in Bedford Park on October 20. It's alleged that he reportedly told Josh to bring a condom. Creeps Spotlight shared the video of the sting operation on October 27 on YouTube; it featured a 20-minute engagement with Lailani Muniz.
The NGO confronts the activist and asks why he arrived to the meet-up location. Initially, Muniz tries to deny everything and defends himself saying he told Josh he was not going to have sex with him due to his age. But the Creeps Spotlight predator hunter refutes the claim and reminded Muniz that he has the Grindr chat logs. Muniz is also reminded of his title as a transgender activist, but he also denies being a spokesperson for transgender people. He denies doing anything wrong. He tries to walk away but then the police shows up.
Who is Lailani Muniz?
Lailani Muniz is very much well known in New York and has been regularly featuring in LGBT and news media. Muniz was profiled by EDGE Network, an online gay news outlet, in December 2021. The activist, who is HIV positive, was also interviewed in a VICE documentary. He has worked extensively in community social organizations.
Moreover, Muniz was the chief operations officer for the New York Transgender Bodybuilding Federation and worked as a Trauma Informed Care Specialist at the Damian Family Care Center. He was honoured by Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson, earlier this year, at an LGBT Pride Flag Raising Ceremony, wherein Muniz was presented with a certificate of merit.
He is now facing the charges of attempted sexual abuse, misconduct and endangerment of minor. Muniz is to appear in court on December 2.