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UPDATE: More charges, arrest made in human trafficking investigation

Edmonton… More charges have been laid against an Edmonton couple allegedly involved in human trafficking a youth, and a third suspect was also arrested.

Alexander Basaraba and Brooklyn Jober Sutherland have been charged with 17 new criminal offences relating to human trafficking a youth. The couple was previously charged by ALERT’s Human Trafficking Counter Exploitation unit in February 2022. A third suspect, David Tom, has also been charged.

The new charges came after a human trafficking survivor contacted police in response to a media release that was issued by ALERT on March 1, 2022. The survivor, a 17-year-old, girl provided that she was also recruited and forced into working in the sex industry.

Link to original news release:

“ALERT said from the onset of this investigation that our goal was supporting other survivors. These arrests, and new charges, should demonstrate that we are listening and we are committed to holding their perpetrators accountable,” said Staff Sgt. Frank Pagé, ALERT Human Trafficking unit.

The survivor is receiving support and specialized care resources. Survivors of sex trafficking can call 211 for help.

Basaraba and Jober-Sutherland were charged with:

  • Trafficking a person under the age of 18;
  • Procuring a person under the age of 18;
  • Arrangement for a sexual offence against a child;
  • Material benefit from sex trafficking;
  • Advertisement of sexual services;
  • Making child pornography;
  • Distributing child pornography; and
  • Possessing child pornography.

Basaraba faces an additional charge of child luring and remain in police custody awaiting a scheduled court appearance on July 28, 2022.

Tom was charged with:

  • Trafficking a person under the age of 18;
  • Obtaining sexual services for consideration; and
  • Householder permitting prohibited sexual activity.

Tom is scheduled to appear in court on September 7, 2022.

Members of the public who suspect drug or gang activity in their community can call local police, or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). Crime Stoppers is always anonymous.

ALERT was established and is funded by the Alberta Government and is a compilation of the province’s most sophisticated law enforcement resources committed to tackling serious and organized crime.

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