However, they are quick to discourage the type of vigilante justice the teens used in their “To Troll a Predator” video series they posted to YouTube.
“These boys did put themselves and others at risk by engaging in this type of activity,” RCMP Cpl. Tammy Hollingsworth told the Toronto Sun.
The boys – ages 17 and 18 – posted profiles on popular dating sites, then told men who contacted them that they were underage girls.
If they men still wanted to meet, they showed up dressed as Batman and the Flash, filmed the encounters and posted them online.
The sting operation was modeled after Dateline’s “To Catch a Predator” TV show and often happened at parks or fast-food restaurants.
They produced about four videos in late 2011.
At first, the boys were in as much trouble as their “prey.”
On the group’s Facebook page, they talked about being caught by police during an attempted meeting with a 24-year-old man.
“A police officer happened to be in the parking lot caught us before we were able to get any video footage, but the predator did get taken away in the squad car and was detained until further investigation could be completed,” it says on the group’s wall.
Three British Columbia men face charges of luring and have court dates in June and July.