Police chief calls child pronography findings ‘very disturbing’

4-27-2012

Four Thunder Bay men have been charged with accessing and possessing child pornography, which police say is only the tip of the iceberg concerning child pornography in the city.

“There is far more going on in this city than the four people just arrested,” said police chief J.P. Levesque at a Thunder Bay Police Service media conference Friday afternoon.

“The numbers are quite significant and frankly, very disturbing,” he said, adding online child exploitation has become so prolific, it’s becoming difficult to stay on top of it with the resources the police have for it.

The arrests are the result of a recent online investigation by the OPP’s child sexual exploitation section and the TBPS’s cyber crime unit.

There is no indication at this time the four individuals are connected, said Levesque.

The amount of pictures and videos found in the investigation is significant, said OPP Insp. Scott Naylor, the child sexual exploitation unit manager in Orillia.

However, the exact amount won’t be known until the police finish the forensics on the seized hardware. Police also haven’t identified any victims on the pornography found yet.

All of the arrests were made without incident and all of the search warrants were successful, Naylor said.

“We found exactly what we were looking for,” he said.

The Thunder Bay police are one of 18 municipalities involved in the provincial strategy to tackle child exploitation and abuse; through the strategy, the province funded 56 positions to work on the problem.

However, Naylor said this type of work is labour-intensive and costly.

It’s not a problem the police can arrest their way out of, he said.

“This is a societal problem,” he said. “If we can stop the proliferation of child pornography at the front end where it makes it inaccessible for these like-minded people that do this, it would help us out a lot.”

The OPP conducted a large takedown earlier this year in child pornography, but most of the arrests were in southern Ontario. Naylor said there were some targets in Thunder Bay so they came to help the local police.

“There are people trading child pornography and doing online luring on a daily basis in pretty much every city in Ontario,” he said.

“For us to come up and help out Thunder Bay and acquire four bodies in a short period of time li ke this, we consider this a success for one week.”

But it’s a job police could do 24/7.

“People are trading files on a constant basis,” Naylor said. “We’re bound by the limitations of the resources we have.”

The following people were arrested and charged:

26 year old Allan Wilbur Burkhart- Syndicate Avenue North, Thunder Bay
. Accessing Child Pornography C.C. 163.1 (4.1)
. Possessing Child Pornography (2 Counts) C.C. 163.1 (4)
. Distributing Child Pornography C.C. 163.1 (3)

25 year old Justin David William Chabot - Athabasca Street, Thunder Bay
. Accessing Child Pornography C.C. 163.1 (4.1)
. Possessing Child Pornography (2 Counts) C.C. 163.1 (4)
. Distributing Child Pornography C.C. 163.1 (3)

42 year old George Albert Korkola - Bernard Street, Thunder Bay
. Accessing Child Pornography C.C. 163.1 (4.1)
. Possessing Child Pornography (2 Counts) C.C. 163.1 (4)

19 year old Michael William Brown - Simpson Street, Thunder Bay
. Accessing Child Pornography C.C. 163.1 (4.1)
. Possessing Child Pornography (2 Counts) C.C. 163.1 (4)

 http://www.tbnewswatch.com/news/205626/%E2%80%98Very-disturbing%E2%...


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