Child sexual exploitation

Eleven years ago this October, 15-year-old Amanda Todd posted a YouTube video sharing how she was being blackmailed by an online predator after she had exposed her breasts to him during a video call.

That same night, the teen from Port Coquitlam, British Columbia committed suicide.

Last August, a B.C. court convicted the perpetrator, Dutch national Aydin Coban, of sexual extortion, among other offenses. Coban was already serving a sentence in the Netherlands for similar crimes against 33 other victims when he was extradited to Canada to stand trial in Todd's case. 

The number of online child sexual exploitation and abuse incidents almost tripled between 2014 and 2020, according to Statistics Canada.

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Hadassah Alencar is a bilingual journalist based near Montreal. She recently completed the journalism program at Concordia University, where she worked as a teaching assistant and became editor-in-chief...