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Montreal police say sharing child pornography is always illegal — even as a warning

Montreal police say they have had several investigations concerning citizens who shared pornographic material of children to warn others of dangers facing minors.
Montreal police say they have had several investigations concerning citizens who shared pornographic material of children to warn others of dangers facing minors. Jonathan Hayward / The Canadian Press

Montreal police are reminding citizens that sharing child pornography — even if it is meant to serve as a cautionary tale — is considered a crime.

The force said it has headed several police investigations concerning Montrealers who shared pornographic images or video of minors in hopes of making “family and friends aware of the dangers facing their children.”

READ MORE: Close to a dozen arrested in Quebec child porn bust

“Even if their intentions are good, people who share such images are committing a criminal offence and are subject to prosecution,” police said in a statement on Monday.

Police warn showing, viewing, sending, or publishing that kind of material is illegal — and doing so hurts the minors involved.

“It is important to know that sharing child pornography images contributes to the re-victimization of the children who appear in these images,” police said.

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READ MORE: Quebec City high school students charged for allegedly distributing photos of girls

Montrealers who come across any material of that nature are asked not to share them. They should instead immediately contact police by phone, online or by going to their local station.

Until police provide instructions, citizens are also asked not to delete the videos or images.

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