ALERT: Sixteen-year-old was reported victim of human trafficking; “16-year-old victim disclosed to a school counsellor”

Edmonton, Alberta – An Edmonton couple have been charged with numerous criminal offences after a 16-year-old reported to police that she was a victim of human trafficking.

ALERT’s Human Trafficking and Counter Exploitation unit made the arrest and searched two associated homes on February 16, 2022. Alexander Basaraba, 20, and Brooklyn Jober Sutherland, 19, have been charged with numerous offences.

Alexander Basaraba, 20, and Brooklyn Jober Sutherland, 19, have been charged with numerous offences
Alexander Basaraba, 20, and Brooklyn Jober Sutherland, 19, have been charged with numerous offences

The couple’s arrest came after a 16-year-old victim disclosed to a school counsellor that she was recruited and forced into working in the sex industry

“We want to recognize the courage and resiliency of the victim survivor. ALERT is concerned that there are other victims out there and encourage them to reach out to us. Our primary goal is to ensure their safety and to connect them with available resources.” Staff Sergeant Frank Pagé, ALERT Human Trafficking

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

Anyone with information about this investigation, or any human trafficking offence is encouraged to contact local police or Crime Stoppers.

Basaraba and Jober Sutherland are scheduled to appear in court on March 10, 2022 and have been jointly 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;

Possessing child pornography; and

Child luring.

Basaraba is described as six feet two inches tall and 198 pounds. He has brown hair and brown eyes. Jober-Sutherland is described as five feet four inches tall with brown hair and brown eyes. Their photos are being released as the suspects are known to use aliases.

As part of the investigation ALERT had seized $19,000 cash, which is believed to be proceeds of crime.

The investigation began in November 2021 and also involved the assistance of Edmonton Police Service and Parkland County RCMP.

ALERT’s Human Trafficking Counter Exploitation unit investigates domestic human trafficking involving sexual exploitation occurring in Alberta. The integrated unit also works in collaboration with agencies and organizations involved in rescuing and supporting survivors of human trafficking and sexual exploitation.

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.

ALERT

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