SELECTED CASE LAW
In 2015 ONSC 2463, Mr. D was charged with human trafficking, receiving money from human trafficking, unlawful confinement, uttering threats, threatening violence to compelling the complainant to have sex with men and women against her will, and theft of the complainants’ cell phone. He was acquitted of all charges other than theft of the complainant’s cell phone. He had told Ms. S that he would share money earned through her provision of sexual services with her. Ms. S, a 36-year-old woman, was dependent on drugs and alcohol, which impacted her ability to remember events. Sexual service advertisement were placed on the Backpage website, using images that contained her face but another woman’s body, but Ms. S could not remember who placed the ads, the number of ads placed, or whose cellphone was used to make the ads. Ms. S testified that she was given drugs but not much food, was threatened and was not provided with basic toiletries. Ms. S testified that an associate of Mr. D’s assaulted and sexually assaulted her. Mr. D provided contradictory evidence, stating he had posted the ads on Backpage, but that Ms. S had dictated what he write and that Ms. S was not controlled or coerced, but was a willing participant in providing sexual services. He admitted to taking her phone and selling it. The court held that there was not sufficient evidence to convict Mr. D on the prostitution and trafficking related offences, and that Ms. S’s evidence had too many contradictions and unclear memories to be reliable.
Criminal Offence(s): Human Trafficking and Advertising Sexual Services