The TikTok sensation Benji Krol – birth name Benjamin Aleksander Krol – was born in Brazil on 14th December 2000, and currently resides near the affluent Spanish community of Alcobendas in Madrid. The social media personality is of Brazilian-Canadian descent, and began his online career in 2016 by posting musical.ly videos; although he already had a YouTube account, his first upload on the video-sharing site didn’t come until 2018.
According to online sources, Benji is 5ft 9ins (175cms) tall.
When musical.ly merged into TikTok, Benji’s popularity rose exponentially throughout late 2018 and early 2019. He also began dating Spanish TikToker JeyJey Gardi (birth name Jorge Juan Garay Dicenta) around this time, although they have since broken up.
As Benji’s TikTok follower count crept up, he became more active on YouTube with videos such as “Whats on my phone???” and “FURRY FRIEND TAG!”. His first videos were centered around answering common fan questions, trying out creative snacks, and sharing glimpses of his everyday life, such as outings with his friends or a day at the beach with his brother.
Unlike some TikTokers who only share a sanitized version of their personal life, Benji has never shied away from revealing his true personality – see “why my life is a mess + room tour!!! lol” or “An average teen gives his opinions on stuff”. In 2019, Benji also discovered his talent for makeup and began uploading tutorials, sometimes joining forces with other prominent members of the YouTube community such as Abby Roberts.
While Benji and JeyJey were in a relationship, they would often upload cute videos in which they cooked together, spoke Spanish, or did fun couple activities. However, this all changed in August 2020, when an anonymous Twitter user who claimed to be fifteen years old, accused the duo of grooming, by sending sexually explicit images and messages.
As the news took the internet by storm, Benji immediately went on a social media hiatus, although he did release a Twitter statement in which he claimed to be in hospital after a botched suicide attempt. The influencer also added that JeyJey had broken up with him, as he was unable to cope with the negative attention and pressure that he was receiving.
In late September 2020, Benji uploaded a half-hour YouTube video entitled “clearing things up”, in which he discussed the grooming allegations that had got him unceremoniously cancelled. The video came complete with a trigger warning and several online helplines and other resources for those struggling with mental health issues, as Benji shared that he had spent his month-long hiatus educating himself about such topics.
The YouTuber made sure to leave no demographic out of his apology video – amongst the links included were websites to support trans rights, gender equality, and Black Lives Matter. Benji started off the video by denying that he’d admitted to grooming anyone, adding that his accuser had used fake screenshots to spread a false narrative.
Benji then delved into his version of events, claiming that when he began talking to his accuser – apparently, a 15-year-old male who Benji didn’t want to name – they communicated via FaceTime calls, but didn’t text much. Whoever the accuser was, they were clearly known enough to have a Famous Birthdays profile, as the topic was mentioned during one of their discussions – which led to Benji looking him up and seeing that his age was listed as fifteen.
‘I asked him about it, and he said that it was a mistake on Famous Birthdays’ part and that he was actually 16 and he was trying to get the website to fix it,’ the TikToker explained. Benji then added that the legal age of consent in Spain was 16 years old, and provided later screenshots in which the accuser – whose account name couldn’t be seen – confirmed that he was 16. The accuser later revealed that he had been lying about his age.
tiktok won’t let me post this so here’s my 2019, thank you to everyone who made it so great 🙂 pic.twitter.com/BIXSubNTgb
— Benji Krol (@BenjiKrol) December 14, 2019
The next part of the video saw Benji share some details about the accuser’s identity. According to the Brazilian, his accuser had a largely online platform, had befriended his then-boyfriend JeyJey at the end of 2019, and had used JeyJey as a way to befriend Benji and try to flirt with him. Later, an explicit FaceTime call ensued between the three TikTokers, and it turned out that JeyJey and Benji had indeed been flirting with their accuser, as they thought that he was of legal age. Although some netizens were dissatisfied with Benji’s explanation, his efforts were good enough to get him ‘uncancelled’.
Meanwhile, JeyJey’s social media break lasted four months, and when he returned to the internet, plenty of drama ensued. Having lost over half a million followers since the allegations came to light, JeyJey had his work cut out trying to fix his reputation, and released a statement in which he said: ‘Today I felt better enough to start posting again… I promise that I’ve always tried to be the best and I can promise that hasn’t change.’ As JeyJey had been accused of abandoning Benji after the latter’s suicide attempt, he added: ‘I never stopped loving Benji and I never left him alone.’
JeyJey’s sincerity didn’t win him many points with unimpressed former fans, however, as he would later admit that he had also sent explicit photos of Benji to his unnamed friend – the accuser – without Benji’s consent. The real story is unlikely to come out at this point, but followers of Benji tend to blame JeyJey for what happened, as JeyJey was apparently willing to communicate in an explicit manner with the anonymous TikToker, and also pressured Benji to participate.
These days, Benji is thriving once again, and has millions of followers across various platforms, as well as his own apparel brand. JeyJey, however, hasn’t been so lucky. His last Instagram post was back in late 2022, and the internet hasn’t let him live down the grooming scandal that turned him into a pariah.
Although Benji is currently believed to be single, JeyJey found love again and has included his current boyfriend in many YouTube videos. It’s important to note that his YouTube stats have gone down as well, with his last video – which was uploaded in early 2023 – barely cracking 8,000 views. At this point, it’s widely believed that JeyJey is slowly phasing out of social media, and wishes to return to anonymity.