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Two Saultites charged in massive child exploitation investigation

November investigations by 27 police agencies yields 551 charges against 122 persons, including 11 youth
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2018-12-05 opp porn bust
Deputy Commissioner Rick Barnum of the OPP Investigation and Support Bureau, centre, says the OPP will 'not stand for anyone hurting our kids.' Barnum works at OPP Headquarters in Orillia. OPP Photo
NEWS RELEASE
SAULT STE. MARIE POLICE SERVICE
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At a media conference today in Vaughan, Ont., Provincial Police (OPP) along with 26 police agencies of the Provincial Strategy announced the results of investigations during the month of November across the entire province of Ontario.  

A total of 267 judicial authorizations were obtained, resulting in 551 charges against 122 persons, including 11 youth who cannot be identified under terms of the Youth Criminal Justice Act. Charges include: sexual assault, sexual interference, invitation to sexual touching, possession of child pornography, make available child pornography, distribution of child pornography, making child pornography, accessing child pornography, luring, making sexually explicit material available to a child.  

In addition, 55 victims were identified during the investigations and referred to appropriate community-based resources for assistance. Police also seized a total of 17 firearms, three of which were loaded handguns.   

Additional partners that participated in these investigations included RCMP, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), Canadian Forces National Investigation Service, The FBI and United States Homeland Security Investigations.

Representatives of BOOST Child and Youth Advocacy Centre and the Canadian Centre for Child Protection (CCCP) were also on hand to advocate for more services for identified victims of exploitation and to enhance awareness to prevent further harm and victimization.

Police displayed a video showing 834 unique IP addresses associated to the possession or making available of child sexual abuse material or were present on a suspected child pornography website.

These IP addresses were observed over the month of November alone. Police describe these numbers as the “tip of the iceberg” in relation to online child sexual exploitation in Ontario.

From its inception in August 2006, the entire Provincial Strategy has completed 50,403 investigations and laid 20,901 charges against 5,686 people. During that period, 2,009 child victims have been identified in Ontario and beyond.  

In Sault Ste. Marie, two individuals were taken into custody during the month of November relating to child pornography offences. 

On Nov. 22, a 17-year-old male was taken into custody and charged with one count of possession of child pornography and one count of making child pornography available. 

In addition, on Dec. 3, 2018 officers with the Technological Crime Unit of The Sault Ste. Marie Police Service arrested 30-year-old Joshua Johnson from Sault Ste. Marie for internet luring.

It is alleged that between June 1 of 2017 and Feb. 13 of 2018, the accused communicated online with a young person for purposes of making child pornography, and that he sent nude images to that young person.

In November of 2018, a search warrant was executed at the residence of the accused and he was found to be in possession of child pornography. The accused was taken into custody on Dec. 3. He has been charged with;

  • One count of making child pornography,
  • Two counts of Internet Luring,
  • One count of possession of child pornography, and;
  • One count of indecent act

He was held for bail court.

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