Charges for virtual crimes growing in digital era

Charges for virtual crimes growing in digital era

Charges for virtual crimes growing in digital era

It may be fun and exciting for couples to photograph each other during intimate moments, but Ottawa criminal lawyer Céline Dostaler says those who do run the risk of facing criminal charges if the photos are published online.

Among all the virtual crimes unleashed by our increasingly online lives are charges of publishing intimate images without the subject’s consent are a standout growth area, she tells

Although you might think adults have more common sense, they are just as likely as teenagers to be over-sharing, says Dostaler, the founder of Céline Dostaler Professional Corporation.

“What I see happening more and more is publishing intimate images online. We all have cellphones and are constantly taking pictures of people. It’s not uncommon for people to take intimate photos. Everything is all very quick these days — we take a picture with our phone, it’s all saved on a cloud, and then you get somebody who had a bad breakup, and they decide to retaliate by posting those images online,” she says.

Since 2015 legislation on cyberbullying made it an offence to publish intimate images of anyone online without their consent, Dostaler says she’s had a number of clients facing charges under this law.

“It’s still very new in the Criminal Code, so some of the people who have been charged are in the midst of the process right now,” she says.

Among the questions clients ask is “can they prove it was me?”

Read full article here - October 1st, 2018 (

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