'Hot criminal' Jeremy Meeks gets modelling contract

Jeremy Meeks

The modelling agency which has signed "hot criminal" Jeremy Meeks from behind bars has told Newbeat "everybody deserves a second chance".

The 30-year-old's mug shot went viral after being posted on Stockton Police Department's Facebook page last year.

Meeks was arrested for possessing a gun and was jailed for 27 months in February after admitting the charge.

He's now agreed a deal with LA and New York based White Cross Management.

The company describes the prisoner as a model and actor and has used his mug shot on its website.

Jim Jordan from the agency said: "When I first saw Jeremy's picture, the first thing that came to my mind was I needed to help this guy. After speaking with his wife and meeting his family, I got a real sense of who Jeremy was as a husband and father, not to mention how beautiful he is inside and out."

Stockton Police Department called Meeks "one of the most violent criminals in the area", but that does not concern the agency.

"We have all done things in our past," said Jim Jordan. "But we are looking forward to Jeremy's future. I do not think it will affect Jeremy's career due to the overwhelming response he has received from clients and fans around the world.

"The sky is the limit. He can go in many directions, including endorsement deals, acting opportunities, and reality show negotiations."

Jeremy Meeks

The original police post now has more than 100,000 likes and nearly 13,000 shares. Two fan pages later set up also have more than 300,000 likes between them.

"Hottttttt," wrote Melissa Stiles on the original post, while Ellie Abbey commented, "Holy [heck] I would arrest him too... Hottest bad boy I've seen".

But not everyone was impressed, with some like Amber Gomes adding: "$900,000 in bail and 6 felonies. You ladies are desperate."

Jeremy Meeks

In the last 10 years Meeks has been arrested for theft, fraud and forgery.

Police claimed he was an active gang member, something Meeks denied in the past telling ABC News he wasn't "some kingpin".

The prisoner, who was also ordered to take part in a substance abuse programme, now claims he's getting hundreds of letters from fans every month.

"I'm in a place where I will be able to provide for my family and really change my life," he told the American news network.

"I never thought that everyone in the world would recognise me for my looks, so I feel extremely blessed and very thankful."

Meeks claims he's now eating healthily and exercising to prepare for a future modelling career.

He could be released from prison as early as November.

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