Amanda Bynes is being terrorized by fake Twitter accounts and the social media giant is doing nothing to stop it, the actress’ lawyer tells People.
Bynes, 32, has been complaining about the fake accounts for years, urging her followers to stay away. Her attorney says she has also made repeated legal requests to the company asking that the accounts be removed. Recently, one of the alleged impostors wrote a post on Instagram asking fans to send money to help with medical bills, TMZ reported. That account no longer appears to be active.
“At the end of the day, if an account is getting attention and buzz Twitter isn’t taking it down,” Bynes’ family attorney says. “Even if it’s mocking someone who is mentally ill. It’s mocking mental illness as a whole and letting this impostor terrorize Amanda with every tweet.”
When asked for comment, Twitter noted that it does not comment on individual users’ accounts.
The actress’ lawyer claims to have sent Twitter a letter demanding one fake account be taken down “years ago, when Amanda was at her worst.” The lawyer explains, “I sent demand letters telling Twitter to take down the account because it was impersonating her, bullying her, asking for money in her name etc. Twitter came back saying it was a parody account and refused to take it down.”
Her attorney adds, “I’m the biggest proponent of the First Amendment, but what is there to parody about mental illness? Why is that funny? Why is what happened to this kid parody-worthy?”
The now-private account is still active and has over 24,000 followers. The account’s name and biography do not purport to represent Bynes.
Bynes has tweeted about the fake accounts on her real Twitter page in the past.
“I repeat: I am not @persianla27. She got into my private instagram somehow and took all my photos and videos,” the actress wrote last February.
I repeat: I am not @persianla27. She got into my private instagram somehow and took all my photos and videos.
— amanda bynes (@amandabynes) February 15, 2017
“I have asked repeatedly. This person continues to impersonate and harass me and twitter needs to take the account down,” she said earlier that month.
I have asked repeatedly. This person continues to impersonate and harass me and twitter needs to take the account down.
— amanda bynes (@amandabynes) February 14, 2017
“I am not @persianla27. I am not getting married and I am not pregnant. I don’t understand why twitter won’t take @persianla27 down,” she said the same day.
— amanda bynes (@amandabynes) February 14, 2017
In 2016, she tweeted, “I really wish Twitter would take the account in question down, I’m not sure why they are refusing to do so.”
Bynes, who rarely uses social media, shared her first tweet in over a year in February. “Dinner with friends at Girasol,” the former Nickelodeon star wrote alongside the photo of herself and her friends smiling together at their table.
The last time Bynes used the social media platform was in April of last year, when she ended a two-month social media hiatus by posting a photo of her and an unidentified friend posing next to a large arrangement of pink and white flowers.
Even though she has largely kept herself out of the public eye recently, in December of last year her lawyer told Page Six that Bynes was finishing up fashion school and hoping to ease her way back into Hollywood — provided she finds the right role, of course.
“Amanda is looking forward to ringing in the new year with her close friends this year,” her lawyer revealed. “In 2018, she looks forward to completing fashion school and dipping her toe back into acting. She has had several offers but is waiting for the right one to come along for a comeback.”
After grappling with personal mental health issues and a string of brushes with the law — including two hit and run charges in 2012 and two DUI arrests — Bynes mostly retreated from the spotlight. But the former child actress expressed her desire to return to acting back in June of last year during her first interview in four years.
“I want to do TV, maybe a few guest spots on some shows that I’m a fan of and maybe another TV show that I’m the star of it,” she told Hollyscoop’s Diana Madison.
Bynes’ last acting credit was in 2010’s Easy A with Emma Stone. She was previously the star of sitcom What I Like About You from 2002-2006, and The Amanda Show from 1999-2002.
She regained control of her finances in 2017 after her mom Lynn petitioned the court to hand them back to her. Her mom had been acting as the conservator over both her personal and financial affairs.
“The court felt, based on Amanda’s progress and her great relationship with her parents, there was no longer a need for court supervision of Amanda’s money and she and her family can handle her financial affairs privately,” her lawyer Nyree Kolanjian told People at the time. “This was a first step in the right direction. Amanda’s doing fantastic.”