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Statement: Decade-long journey for justice

Sentencing for Todd’s abuser must be a catalyst for change in online safety for children

For Immediate Release

Winnipeg, Canada — Our heavy hearts are with the Todd family following today’s sentencing decision for the Dutch man who tormented their 15-year-old daughter Amanda, who later died by suicide.

While nothing can ever take away the pain Amanda’s parents, Carol and Norm Todd, family and friends have dealt with since her death, it is encouraging that the Canadian justice system has done its part to make the offender accountable for these offences. We hope to see more of these types of offenders held accountable in this country for the harm they perpetrate on Canadian children.

Amanda was targeted online for almost three years by the offender. He sent more than 700 messages to her and her contacts using 22 aliases. No one should ever have to endure this kind of targeted assault online.

All of our systems are signalling that Canadian children are increasingly being preyed upon in digital environments by offenders, both here and abroad. The anonymity of the internet, its jurisdictional complexities, and the complete absence of meaningful online safeguards for children have made it easier than ever for offenders to relentlessly target their victims. Many more than we can imagine are fighting silently, as Amanda was, against online abusers.

Canadians must take urgent action. We must demand regulation and safety standards, as we do in all other areas of society, for online services and platforms our children use each day.

We owe it to Amanda Todd.


About the Canadian Centre for Child Protection: The Canadian Centre for Child Protection (C3P) is a national charity dedicated to the personal safety of all children. The organization’s goal is to reduce the sexual abuse and exploitation of children through programs, services, and resources for Canadian families, educators, child serving organizations, law enforcement, and other parties. C3P also operates, Canada’s national tipline to report child sexual abuse and exploitation on the internet, and Project Arachnid, a web platform designed to detect known images of CSAM on the clear and dark web and issue removal notices to industry.

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