Greater Trail: Alleged online predator charged with 47 counts

Seventeen-year-old to appear in Rossland court Thursday

A 17-year-old local youth picked up for luring Greater Trail young people online is set to appear in Rossland Provincial Court Thursday.

The youth, who can’t be named because of his age, has been charged with 47 counts that include impersonation with intent, extortion, uttering threats, communication via computer to lure a child under the age of 18, obtaining sexual services of a person under the age of 18 and invitation to sexual touching.

Greater Trail RCMP first received two leads on an account user making physical threats to convince local boys around 13 years old to add him as a friend on Facebook.

Once added, the suspect made sexual remarks and in some instances, asked the youth to remove their clothes while using a web camera.

“It is believed that the suspect communicated with the victims, ranging in ages between 10 to 14 years old, for the purpose of having them perform sexual acts over their web cameras and to arrange face to face meetings with them,” noted Sgt. Rob Vermeulen with “E” Division Communication Services in a news release.

These incidents allegedly occurred from June 2009 through to November of last year. But the police investigation is ongoing and additional charges could be expected.

The suspect and victims identities in this investigation are all protected under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.