Crown seeks five years for sex crime

·2 min read

A Prince George man found guilty of confining and sexually interfering with a seven year old boy a decade ago is facing up to five years in prison for the crime.

That is how much a Crown prosecutor contended the man should receive for a 2011 attack on the child, despite case case law suggesting three years being the norm for others who have committed similar offences.

During a hearing at the courthouse, Marie Louise Ahrens noted, however, that the maximum for sexual interference has since been increase to 14 years from 10 and contended that the increase gave B.C. Supreme Court Justice Brenda Brown the leeway for a longer term.

Defence counsel Mitch Houg disagreed with Ahrens' position and her interpretation of a Supreme Court of Canada decision related to the matter.

Houg argued for three years in a federal prison or, alternately, two years less a day in a provincial jail followed by probation of up to three years, the maximum allowed for time served in a provincial institution.

Following a trial, Brown found found the man guilty in December of sexual interference and forcible confinement. He name cannot be published under a court-ordered publication ban against information that could identify the victim.

According to a brief summary given at the hearing, the man was in an extended stay with the boy's mother and effectively acting as a stepfather. In August 2011, the man had been supervising the boy and his younger sister while their mother was away at work. The court heard he had tied up both children and forced the boy to perform a sexual act on the him.

The man denies the acts and maintains his innocence.

In a statement to the court, the boy's father said his son continues to suffer nightmares and day terrors as a result. The allegations were first reported to police three years ago.

The judge will issue a decision at a later date.

Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince George Citizen