A man from Terrebonne north of Laval is expected to be sentenced at the Laval courthouse on Saint-Martin Blvd. on July 2 to a mandatory minimum six months in prison after a judge rejected his lawyer’s motion to stay proceedings following his conviction for trying to hire a minor for sexual relations.
In June 2018, officers from the Laval Police Department were conducting a sting operation in which undercover officers posed on the internet as people offering minors to be hired for sex.
Operation Défensif had begun in 2016 after teenagers began disappearing from a youth protection centre in Laval. By 2019, more than three dozen men had been arrested in the sting, including several who still have cases pending at the Laval courthouse.
Testifying in his defence, Vincent Alexandre Brodeur, 45, acknowledged he had been seeking to hire an escort – something he had done numerous times before – but said he was not looking to have sex with a minor in this particular instance.
Brodeur claimed he was instigated into committing the crime by the police. He said they did not have a reasonable motive to suspect he was engaged in criminal activity and that what they did was actually an offered opportunity to commit a crime.
He also argued that the online ads placed by the police didn’t mention the possibility of having sex with minors, even though the ads included photos of young escorts described as “jeunes débutantes.”
Regardless, Brodeur responded, called the number, and inquired about two of the girls being advertised. He was informed that the one he was most interested in was 16, the jury was told in witness testimony.
Urgences-Santé paramedics on strike since late last Sunday
Paramedics from Urgences-Santé, serving Laval as well as Montreal, have been on strike since midnight last Sunday. Members of the Syndicat du préhospitalier – CSN say they plan to be on strike indefinitely.
“For several months now, negotiations have been stagnant because the Treasury Board has not yet given Urgences-Santé the mandates it needs to finally begin negotiating monetary demands,” Syndicat du préhospitalier – CSN president Réjean Leclerc said in a statement.
“We have no choice but to increase the pressure to unlock these mandates. It’s a question of respect for paramedics.”