Arrest Made in Connection to Amanda Todd Cyber Bullying Case

Illustration for article titled Arrest Made in Connection to Amanda Todd Cyber Bullying Case

A arrest has been made in the Netherlands in connection to the death of Amanda Todd, a Canadian teenager who committed suicide after chronicling her online harassment.

Todd's story made headlines when she posted a video to YouTube telling the story of how a stranger convinced her to show her breasts on a webcam. Then he blackmailed her to "put on a show for him," otherwise he would share the photo on social media. She refused and he followed up on his threat. The image ended up on Facebook.

Following the incident, Todd was bullied with such intensity she became severely ill, suffering from anxiety and depression. She even tried changing schools, which didn't stop the attacks. After sharing the video, which has now been viewed almost 20 million times, she committed suicide.


According to an Associated Press report on ABC News, an arrest has been made stemming from the incident:

Royal Canadian Mounted Police Insp. Paulette Freill said a suspect has been arrested in the Netherlands and charged with extortion, luring and criminal harassment and possession of child pornography for the purpose of distribution. Police did not release the name of the 35-year-old man and 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.


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. The suspect, 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.

"The suspicions against the man are that he approached underage girls via the Internet and then seduced them into performing sexual acts in front of a webcam," prosecutors said in a statement.


Prosecutors said the man also approached adult men using similar tactics, often posing as an underage boy. Van Dijk said so far, no country has sought to have his client extradited. He said his client is exercising his right to remain silent.

Wiping away tears, Carol Todd, Amanda's mother said "This is truly a day we have been waiting for."

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There's no downplaying the good police work of the RCMP and Interpol. He's filth and merits no mercy. But the predation, as horrible as it was, was only part of this child's nightmare. Her peers, who knew her, who saw her every day, are not just bullies - they preyed on her as well, and are maybe even more culpable than an anonymous monster. I know all about the pack mentality. But it's not an excuse. And I think it may be time to stop referring to these human hyenas as "bullies", which is a childish name for what they actually are - peer predators in their own right.