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Child porn investigations spike 105 per cent on part of Vancouver Island

A person types on a laptop on a train in New Jersey, May 18, 2021. West Shore RCMP are reporting an increase of 105 per cent in child pornography investigations between 2021 and 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Jenny Kane

Child pornography investigations spiked 105 per cent between 2021 and 2022 on part of Vancouver Island, according to the West Shore RCMP.

The detachment’s jurisdiction includes Langford, Colwood, View Royal, Metchosin, Highlands, Songhees First Nation, and Esquimalt First Nation. In a Monday news release, the Mounties said they conducted 39 such investigations last year, compared to 19 in 2021.

“The officers in the Serious Crime Unit are extremely dedicated and invest enormous effort into investigating these terrible crimes,” said Sgt. Thana Hodge in the release.

“Though the number of these investigations appears to be increasing year over year, the unit takes some comfort in these recent convictions.”

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Between September 2022 and February, five men and one woman were convicted of a variety of charges related to child pornography, including possession and production, distribution, sexual assault, invitation to sexual touching, and child luring. The offenders’ ages ranged between 28 and 40.

The lengthiest prison sentence — 18 years — was given to a man in January after a year-long investigation. The shortest sentence — a seven-month conditional sentence with 18 months of probation — was given to a man last month after eight months of investigation.

The West Shore RCMP is encouraging victims of crime to contact their local police and visit victimsinfo.ca for more B.C.-based information and available resources.

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