Operation Bane, a proactive investigation to tackle online child exploitation, was launched by Norfolk and Suffolk Constabulary in 2014...
mercoledì 26 aprile 2017
Man pleaded guilty to aggravated sexual assault of children
A Saskatoon man who pleaded guilty last year to several child sex offences will have a hearing to determine if he can erase one of those pleas.
At the same time, the Crown will request a dangerous offender assessment on the remainder of Kenneth John Bowman’s charges.
Bowman was charged in March 2016 after members of the Internet Child Exploitation (ICE) unit received information that a man claiming to have previously sexually abused a child said he had immediate access to the same child for further sexual abuse. Officers arrested Bowman just outside an apartment building in the 1600 block of Main Street, where police suspected the assault took place.
He pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a child and making child porn, administering a noxious substance in commission of a sexual assault, arranging to commit a sexual offence and aggravated sexual assault against another child.
Bowman also pleaded guilty to two other aggravated sexual assault charges against two adults. The Crown said the aggravating factor in all three charges is that Bowman had unprotected sex without disclosing that he was HIV positive.
In Saskatoon provincial court on Tuesday, defence lawyer Tanis Talbot requested a hearing to expunge Bowman’s guilty pleas to the aggravated sexual assault charges, telling court his viral load may have been low enough that he would not have been required to divulge his HIV status.
Even so, Talbot agreed there is still criminal liability in the charge involving a child, and the facts would support a charge of sexual assault causing bodily harm instead.
She indicated there have been changes in the “legal landscape” since the guilty pleas were entered. Thompson said the defence is drawing on more recent cases that interpret a 2012 Supreme Court decision in different ways.
“There are no real Saskatchewan cases on this issue,” he said. “So there is a little bit of uncertainty in that respect, although the Crown certainly felt that the guilty plea was valid.”
Judge Doug Agnew ordered that a date be set for an expungement hearing on the aggravated sexual assault charges. Meanwhile, Thompson said the Crown plans to proceed with the first step of a dangerous offender application — a medical assessment — on the rest of Bowman’s charges once an agreed statement of facts is presented in court.
“So many of the counts are not in dispute and even on the counts that are in dispute, the facts aren’t in dispute,” Thompson said.
“It’s about what the consequences legally are of what he did.”