Following years of criminal activity involving the production, possession and distribution of child sexual exploitation material, an Ottawa man has been convicted of his offences, in what was one of the largest such seizures by the RCMP ever in Canada. On June 10, 2021, Tristen Alexandre Perrier, 68, of Ottawa, Ontario appeared in the Ontario Provincial Court and was sentenced to 5.5 years in jail minus 11 days served after pleading guilty to:
- 1 count of making child pornography, Section 163.1(2) of the Criminal Code
- 1 count of possession of child pornography, Section 163.1(4) of the Criminal Code
- 1 count of distribution of child pornography, Section 163(3) of the Criminal Code
These charges are a result of a joint international investigation into a group of transnational child sex offenders that revealed the involvement of a Canadian man.
In addition to the prison sentence, Perrier will also:
- Be required to submit DNA samples
- Face a Sex Offender Information Registration Act (SOIRA) order for life
- Have to adhere to all subsections of Section 161 of the Criminal Code
The RCMP's Victim Identification Unit, a unit within the National Child Exploitation Crime Centre, initiated an investigation into Perrier in January 2020.
On June 30, 2020, the RCMP, with assistance from the Ottawa Police Service Internet Child Exploitation Unit, executed search warrants at multiple locations. Perrier was arrested and subsequently released on strict conditions, including not being able to live alone or be in unsupervised company of minors and not allowed to possess a device that could access the internet.
Although he has plead guilty to crimes committed in Canada, the RCMP does not have information to suggest the man committed sexual offences against any Canadian children. Some of the man's activities occurred while traveling abroad and involved crimes carried out over many years on the dark web.
When imposing the 5.5 year sentence, Justice Wadden of the Ontario Court of Justice stated that Perrier had "glorified and memorialized" the sexual abuse of impoverished children through creating flashy magazine covers depicting it, and in so doing contributed to "this institutional form of sexual violence, which is akin to sexual slavery".
No country is immune to child sexual exploitation offences – it is a global issue. While some children may be more vulnerable in specific parts of the world for various reasons, it is also happening here in Canada, and right in our own neighbourhoods. Offenders are well versed on how to engage with children and youth and vigilance must be used at all times both on and offline.
Online child sexual exploitation crimes have no borders and making child sexual exploitation materials available online re-victimizes children again and again. Whether crimes against children are recent or historical, the RCMP and its partners around the globe are committed to detecting, identifying and safeguarding vulnerable children from child sexual offenders.
- The RCMP's Victim Identification Unit is a specialized Unit dedicated to identifying and safeguarding victims depicted in online child sexual abuse material.
- In 2020, Canadian Internet Child Exploitation (ICE) Units identified 277 Canadian victims.
- The RCMP's National Child Exploitation Crime Centre (NCECC) was created in response to the growing and disturbing crime of online child sexual exploitation and a key part of its mandate is victim identification.
- Under the Criminal Code, specifically, sub-section 7 (4.1), a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada may be charged in Canada for a sexual offence against a child committed in a foreign country.
- Offenders convicted in Canada of a child sexual offence, must notify a Provincial or Territorial Sex Offender Registration Centre of any international travel and of any duration.