A 17-year old girl from Ottawa, Canada, faces a 14-year imprisonment term after the court found her guilty of running an underage prostitution ring.
The Court on Wednesday found the girl guilty on 30 of 33 charges, including procurement for the purpose of prostitution, sexual assault, child luring, human trafficking, making child pornography, uttering threats and unlawful confinement, among others. She was among three girls whose identities are withheld, protected under a publication ban when they were arrested in June 2012 in the Ottawa area.
The Crown said it will pursue an adult sentence for the 17-year old teen after she undergoes psychiatric assessment.
The girl pleaded not guilty in April 2013 at the outset of the trial against her.
The teen's illegal activities were spilled out into the open after one of the victims she befriended complained to her mother, who later on informed authorities. Her daughter, whom she had earlier took to a sleepover with a friend, came home distraught and crying.
Through Facebook and other social media channels, the child prostitution ringleader and her partners lured victims to meet at a south-end Ottawa housing complex to hang out. The girls will eventually get drugged and later on taken elsewhere to meet clients.
The court heard the victims got beaten, confined and forced to hand over their earnings. There were some who were forced to strip, their naked bodies photographed and then texted to clients.
"The ringleader was guided by greed, without any regard for the damage that she inflicted physically and emotionally upon a population of vulnerable girls," Fara Rupert, Crown prosecutor, said in her closing argument, according to Metro News Ottawa.
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