A Canadian who directed the online abuse of children in the Philippines is facing up to 17 years in prison after his collection of videos and images were described as “depraved”.
As we have previously reported, Philip Michael Chicoine, from Saskatoon, has pleaded guilty to to 40 counts of possessing, producing and sharing child pornography.
A court has been told how the 27-year-old directed the real-time sexual abuse of children via Skype from his parents’ home.
“This is by far the most depraved collection I’ve seen,” Corporal Jared Clarke from the Internet Child Exploitation Unit said at Chicoine’s sentencing hearing in Saskatoon on Monday (June 19).
He added that Chicoine had a collection of more than 580 videos and more than 4,000 photos, which he had amassed after spending more than $20,000 over five years.
He would discuss his perverted interests with the parents of the children, who ranged in age from mere infants to 14 years old. Then the parents would abuse their own children according to his instructions.
According CBC News, vile videos found on his computer were played to the court. These depicted scenes of horrific child abuse, in which the screams of the victims could be heard.
During online exchanges with the Filipino abusers, Chicoine said he preferred children who cried during the abuse, and that he favoured what he described as “hurtcore”. He also complained about the difficulties of finding “pedomoms” to organise abuse.
Some of the material was so disturbing, Cpl. Clarke said, that it had affected him personally. “This collection really stuck with me. It caused me to have nightmares.”
Prosecutor Lana Morelli said the investigation began on February 14 this year when police came across a single image uploaded to a computer in Saskatoon.
In addition to the Skype contact with his Filipino contacts, Morelli said Chicoine texted children directly. She read texts from children as young as 10 in Florida, Australia and Saskatoon.
At one point, a 14-year-old texted him asking for money to pay for her school bus fare, and that she was so overwhelmed she was considering killing herself. To that, Chicoine replied that he’d want her to film the suicide so he could watch.
Morelli said that police raided Chicoine’s home days before he was planning to meet a woman in Saskatoon, whose cousin in the Philippines was among those helping to arrange the online abuse.
According to exchanges between them, he was preparing to travel to the Philippines to rape pre-teens and toddlers.
The case continues and has been adjourned until June 29.