CORNWALL – The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Child Sexual Exploitation Unit (CSEU), Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry OPP, Grenville OPP along with OPP Digital Forensics investigators have arrested and charged Frank Prevost, the current Mayor of South Glengarry and the Warden for the United Counties of Stormont Dundas, and Glengarry (SD&G), and a Cornwall resident with child luring offences after an online undercover operation.
Prevost was arrested on June 8 and charged with three counts of luring a child, contrary to section 172.1(1)(b) of the Criminal Code.
As a result of a separate investigation involving an adult victim, the accused has also been charged with one count of sexual assault, contrary to section 271 of the Criminal Code.
He was held for a video bail hearing at the Ontario Court of Justice in Cornwall.
A press release from the united counties acknowledged the arrest of Prevost but declined to make any comment because the issue is before the courts. The release stated: “SDG and Township councils will be reviewing the matter shortly to determine appropriate next steps.”
Being charged with a crime does not necessarily mean a councilor, mayor or warden will be forced to leave their position. A presumption of innocence provides protection from that however if a member of a council is absent from his or her position for more than three months without the permission of fellow council members they can be removed from their position.
The OPP has seen an increase in online offender behaviour, by people intent on the sexual exploitation of children. As a result, members of OPP CSEU are actively conducting proactive online luring investigations to aggressively target these offenders.
Parents are reminded to take a proactive approach to help protect their children from online sexual exploitation by speaking with their children regarding Internet safety. Parents and anyone interested in protecting children can find resources to assist them at www.cybertip.ca. Anyone with information regarding this investigation, or if you have information regarding Internet child exploitation, please contact the OPP. If you wish to remain anonymous, you can contact Crime Stoppers at (TIPS) or 1-800-222-8477 www.ontariocrimestoppers.ca. Reporting information may also be made on the internet through www.cybertip.ca or by calling 1-888-310-1122.