VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Canadian police confirmed an arrest has been made in the Netherlands in the case of a Canadian teenager who was blackmailed into exposing herself in front of a webcam. The 15-year-old later committed suicide after detailing her harassment on a YouTube video watched by millions around the world.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police Insp. Paulette Freill said Thursday that a suspect was arrested in the Netherlands and charged with extortion, luring and criminal harassment and possession of child pornography for the purpose of distribution. The 35-year-old man has been identified under Dutch privacy laws only as "Aydin C."
Freill declined to release specifics of the case but said there were other victims in Canada and internationally. Dutch prosecutors said the man is suspected of blackmailing girls in the U.S., Britain and the Netherlands. Canadian police said they would seek extradition.
Amanda Todd brought the problem of cyber bullying to mainstream attention in Canada after she posted a video on YouTube in which she told her story with handwritten signs, describing how she was lured by a stranger to expose her breasts on a webcam.
The picture ended up on a Facebook page made by the stranger, to which her friends were added.
She was repeatedly bullied, despite changing schools, before finally killing herself weeks after posting the video. It has now been viewed more than 17 million times.
"This is truly a day we have been waiting for," said Carol Todd, Amanda's mother. She wiped away tears as she thanked police.
Dutch prosecutors said they filed indecent assault and child pornography charges against the man. Lawyer Christian van Dijk earlier confirmed to The Associated Press that one of the charges against his client involved a 15-year-old girl from British Columbia.
Aydin C., who has dual Dutch and Turkish nationality, has been in detention since he was arrested in January in a vacation house the town of Oisterwijk. He lived alone, and has no wife or children.
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