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Thread: Child porn charges laid against 10 teens Police allege boys traded screen grabs

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    Child porn charges laid against 10 teens Police allege boys traded screen grabs

    Child porn charges laid against 10 Laval teens - Montreal - CBC News


    Ten boys, aged 13 to 15, appeared in youth court in Laval, Que., today to face child pornography charges, after a school teacher caught a boy with explicit photos allegedly taken with the smartphone application Snapchat.

    Laval police arrested the 10 boys who police allege were trading photos — in several cases, of each other's girlfriends — among themselves on their smartphones.

    All of the teens were charged with possession and distribution of child pornography, while two of the boys also face charges for producing child pornography.

    'Once the picture is sent in cyberspace, it's completely lost. You can't recuperate that, unfortunately,'
    - Laval police Const. Nathalie Lorrain
    Laval police Const. Nathalie Lorrain said police and parents were called to a Laval high school in the English-language Wilfrid Laurier School Board, after a school staff member discovered a male student was showing other boys sexually explicit photographs of a girl.

    "There was a small network of 10 young men that were soliciting young girls that some of them knew very well," said Lorrain.

    Wilfrid Laurier School Board
    Officials at Wilfrid Laurier School Board have refused comment on the explicit photo-sharing scandal. (Elias Abboud/CBC)

    "They were asking these girls for sexually explicit pictures — sometimes with a lot of insistence."

    She said the photos were shared among boys at three Laval schools:

    Mother Theresa Junior High School.
    Laval Liberty High School.
    Laurier Senior High School.
    Late this afternoon, the school board issued a written statement, saying that the board takes incidents like these very seriously and is proactive in implementing its schools preventative educational strategies to teach students.

    "The school teams have been implementing strategies to raise awareness and educate students on safe and responsible use of technology," said the board's director general Stephanie Vucko. "More importantly, intimidation of any sort is not tolerated at any schools of the Sir Wilfrid Laurier School Board."

    Vucko called on parents to be vigilant, "as these incidents occur off school premises but resurface when the students are at the school."

    "Courageous conversations need to take place to discuss the [misuse] of technologies that are so readily accessible," she said.

    Boys released into parents' custody

    After a brief court appearance this afternoon, the boys were released into the custody of their parents.

    They are due back in court on Jan. 20.

    They were ordered to adhere to a number of conditions: to keep the peace, to maintain orderly conduct and to refrain from any contact with the alleged victims unless they cross their paths at school.

    The boys have also been banned from using computers and any other electronic devices that would give them access to the internet, unless it is for school work and unless they are supervised by a parent or school official.

    Laval police said the investigation continues. They said there could be more arrests, and there could be more victims.

    Girls thought Snapchat was safe, police say

    Lorrain said some of the alleged victims thought they were safe because they were using the Snapchat app, which allows users to take and send photos that disappear from a receiver's device after a few seconds.

    However, she said, the young men involved would capture and save screen grabs of the photos before they disappeared.

    "Once the picture is sent in cyberspace, it's completely lost," Lorrain said. "You can't recuperate that, unfortunately."

    Lorrain said Laval police want to broadcast a clear message that the sharing of explicit photos can spiral into dangerous situations.

    "In some cases, the girls were pretty shaken up when they found out," Lorrain said.

    "What we want really is for these young people to respect themselves," she said. "The boys respect the girls. Girls, respect yourselves, and don't send pictures like that."

    Teens in Rehtaeh Parsons case also charged

    The charges against the Laval teens coincide with the appearance of two 18-year-old men in provincial court in Halifax, charged in connection with the Rehtaeh Parsons case.

    One man is charged with creating and distributing child pornography and a second with distributing child pornography.

    Both were youths at the time of her death last spring. The 17-year-old was taken off life support a few days after a suicide attempt.

    According to her parents, four boys sexually assaulted their daughter at a house party when she was 15. The Cole Harbour, N.S., teen was then said to have been mocked by classmates, enduring relentless harassment and humiliation after a digital photo of the attack was circulated at school and on social media.
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    Laval teens' porn charges are 'extreme,' says parent committee chair - Montreal - CBC News

    Some members of a Laval, Que., parent committee say child pornography charges are too "extreme" for a group of teens who allegedly distributed explicit photos of their classmates.

    Last week, Laval police arrested 10 boys, aged 13 to 15, who are accused of trading photos among themselves on their smartphones.

    Child porn charges laid against 10 Laval teens
    Police allege the photos were obtained from the smartphone application Snapchat.

    'We need to be reminded that they are still children.'
    - Jennifer Maccarone, chair of the parents' committee at the Sir Wilfrid Laurier School Board
    All the teens were charged with possession and distribution of child pornography. Two of the boys also face charges for producing child pornography.

    Jennifer Maccarone, chair of the parents' committee at the Sir Wilfrid Laurier School Board, said that while the boys’ behaviour is serious, she thinks the Crown prosecutors have gone overboard.

    Although she said the allegations are serious, the child pornography law should take into account an offender's age.

    She said the general feeling at the parent committee is that the charges go too far.

    “This is a bit on the extreme. We need to be reminded that they are still children,” she told CBC Daybreak host Mike Finnerty.

    Maccarone said that although the boys should be held accountable, the laws need to be adapted for this kind of situation.

    “They’re not adults. They do not process information the same way that we do. Their brains are not fully developed at this point.”

    Maccarone acknowledged it’s important to keep a close eye on how students are using technology, especially in light of the risk of cyberbullying.

    But, she said, teachers and authorities must take generational differences into account as they work to educate children.

    “Sexting and this type of exchange is a new form of flirting — it’s a new way of showing that I’m interested in you.”

    School will focus on proactive education

    Staff at the school board are taking the incident seriously.

    Stephanie Vucko, director general of the Sir Wilfrid Laurier School Board, said although incidents like this often happen outside school hours, the school often ends up dealing with the fallout.

    She wouldn’t say whether any of the boys had been suspended. She said it will be up to the courts to decide what happens next.


    Wilfrid Laurier School Board
    Officials at the Wilfrid Laurier School Board told CBC's Daybreak they will continue to educate students about the safe use of technology. (Elias Abboud/CBC)

    Vucko said the school would continue to work with Laval police to educate their students about the safe use of technology.

    “This is absolutely a teachable moment,” Maccarone said.

    Both Maccarone and Vucko agreed it’s important to focus on how to prevent this from happening again.

    “The internet is written in ink," Maccarone said.

    "If this is not something you would send to your parents, if it’s not something that you would want to have shared amongst a variety of people, then maybe you need to reconsider before you press send.”
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