Kingston man facing 76 charges, including human trafficking, involving 18 alleged victims

·2 min read
The investigation began in January 2022 after police were alerted to someone allegedly using social media to lure victims. (Frank Gunn/Canadian Press - image credit)
The investigation began in January 2022 after police were alerted to someone allegedly using social media to lure victims. (Frank Gunn/Canadian Press - image credit)

A Kingston, Ont., man is facing dozens of criminal charges including human trafficking, sexual assault, and making child pornography. The offences involve 18 alleged victims, at least two of whom were underage, according to police statements and court records obtained on Monday.

Michael Mark Haaima, 37, was arrested in April, according to Ontario Provincial Police Det. Staff Sgt. Andrew Taylor. His next court appearance is scheduled for Tuesday in Kingston.

The charges against Haaima include 18 counts of sexual assault, five counts of unlawfully accessing child pornography and four counts of forcible confinement, as well as (but not limited to):

  • Sexual assault with choking.

  • Compulsions to commit bestiality.

  • Procuring a person under 18 years old.

  • Trafficking a person under 18 years old.

  • Uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm.

  • Luring for making child pornography.

  • Making child pornography.

  • Extortion.

  • Criminal harassment.

  • Overcoming resistance by choking.

  • Voyeurism.

Taylor said he could not confirm the ages of the victims but that they include a mix of youths and adults.

The investigation began in January 2022 after Kingston Police received complaints that someone was allegedly using social media to lure victims, Taylor told CBC News by phone Monday.

The case started out under the purview of Kingston's child sexual exploitation unit, then "furthered into human trafficking charges," Taylor said. At that point a coalition of 21 police agencies, known as the Provincial Human Trafficking Intelligence-led Joint Forces Strategy, became involved.

Ten victims were initially identified and "are now in a place of safety," Monday's news release said.

Investigators found more alleged victims, resulting in more charges being laid involving a total of 18 people, Taylor said.

Allegations date back to 2007

Court records listing 60 of the 76 charges against Haaima including an allegation of sexual touching of a minor dating back to 2007, when Haaima was 22. The bulk of the alleged offences date between 2016 and 2020.

Police believe there could be still more victims, and their investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call the OPP non-emergency number at 1-888-310-1122 or their local police.

"If you or someone you know may be a victim of these crimes, call 911 immediately," the release adds.

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