Coquitlam man charged in prostitution, human trafficking operation
A 35-year-old Coquitlam man has been charged in a prostitution and human trafficking operation that allegedly involved some underage victims.
The Delta Police Department said it received a tip from the public in May 2017 that led them to a prostitution service being advertised on social media.
Police were eventually able to identify three victims, two of whom were underage. Authorities managed to remove one teenage girl and bring her into the care of the Ministry of Children and Family Development.
Staff Sgt. Heath Newton said investigators determined the victims were being "transported between the Metro Vancouver area and Calgary," and that there may be others they haven’t identified yet.
"We are concerned that there may be other victims who were caught up in this prostitution operation," Newton said in a statement. "We are encouraging any other victims, or people with further information to contact us."
The Delta police investigation was wrapped up last December, and the Crown has since approved six prostitution and human trafficking-related charges against Mohammed Sharif Begg.
The accused, who made his first court appearance on Wednesday, is also charged with one count of assault.
Back in 2014, Begg was the focus of a CTV News hidden camera investigation into some questionable practices at the company 1-888-JUNKVAN.
Another suspect identified in the prostitution ring died in an unrelated incident before charges could be approved, according to police.
Anyone with information on the case or who was a victim of the human trafficking operation is asked to contact the Delta Police Department at 604-946-4411, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.