Online Child Sexual Abuse: Virtual World – Real Crimes – Real Children

Ottawa, ON – From September 25 to 27, the National Child Exploitation Coordination Centre (NCECC), in collaboration with the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Project “P”, are holding the 2007 workshop for police investigators who work on Internet-facilitated child sexual exploitation.

“The theme is Virtual world – real crimes – real children,” says Superintendent Earla-Kim McColl, Officer in Charge of the NCECC. “It emphasizes that there are real victims – the children who suffer at the hands of real sex offenders who then circulate evidence of their crimes to likeminded individuals. Law enforcement, industry, Government and the public need to understand that this borderless crime is not a victimless one that only takes place in cyberworld.”

“Canada’s New Government is committed to protecting our children, and we have taken action with significant investments and changes to Canada’s laws,” says Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety, Dave MacKenzie. “Our government strongly supports law enforcement agencies’ efforts to protect children against sexual predators.”

One hundred and twenty law enforcement officers representing 31 police agencies from across Canada are expected to attend. International representatives from the United States, Australia and Austria have also registered for the workshop.

Combating this crime through investigation of the exchange of child pornography takes a truly integrated approach between law enforcement, Government, industry and the public.

The term ‘child pornography’ does not accurately represent the scope of the crime. Children cannot consent to sexual activity and exploitation, nor can they escape the abuse without assistance. The ultimate objective of law enforcement is to not only to catch the criminals, but to identify and remove their young victims from harm.

The workshop is both a learning and intelligence sharing opportunity specifically designed to provide investigators with the tools they need to do their jobs more effectively. By creating links between police agencies across the country and internationally, the NCECC is assisting law enforcement in preventing the abduction, endangerment and sexual exploitation of children.

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For more information, please contact: RCMP Media Relations at (613) 993-2999