Disgraced TikTok influencer, Matthew Lani, says he’ll not be held hostage by the court of public opinion.
He made the remarks after his brief appearance before the Johannesburg Magistrate Court today, following the NPA’s decision to withdraw its charges against him.
The now notorious 27-year-old landed himself in hot water with, among others, the Wits Medical School and the Health Professions Council after claiming to be a medical doctor.
The National Prosecuting Authority says the bogus TikTok doctor cannot be criminally charged for lying to social media users.
The case against the controversial influencer was provisionally withdrawn after the state failed to produce sufficient evidence proving he had impersonated a medical doctor.
Lani was nabbed by authorities on Sunday at the Helen Joseph Hospital where he had, according to his lawyer, gone to shoot content for his TikTok page.
The infamous medic who was arrested at Helen Joseph Hospital last night.
Lani was caught at the health facility disguised in a hoodie, a surgical mask and a… pic.twitter.com/scsHImWtDU
— Y (@Yfm) October 30, 2023
Lani faced a flood of questions as he walked free from the Johannesburg Magistrates Court.
Walking in crutches, the disgraced TikTok influencer would not get into detail about several visible injuries to his lip and hand.
As the defence team comforted the accused outside the courthouse, it maintained that Lani’s online content was meant simply for entertainment.
The 27-year-old’s lawyers say he never actually practiced as a medical doctor or administered medical care to a patient.
The NPA’s Phindi Mjonondwane says despite the alleged lies, Lani cannot be criminally charged at this stage.
The disgraced TikTok influencer told YNews he will consider returning to social media, but he didn’t say whether he will continue dishing out medical advice. Article by Naomi Kobbie
Written by: Lindiwe Mabena