British Columbia

Aydin Coban to appeal Dutch blackmail verdict

The man wanted in Canada for the online exploitation of Amanda Todd is planning an appeal after being sentenced yesterday to nearly 11 years in a Dutch jail on separate charges.

He also faces 5 charges in relation to the Amanda Todd case

Aydin Coban, show here in an artist's sketch from Dutch court in 2017. (Eurovision)

The man wanted in Canada for the online exploitation of Amanda Todd is planning an appeal after being sentenced yesterday to nearly 11 years in a Dutch jail on separate charges.

Aydin Coban, 38, was convicted for fraud and blackmail using the internet on Thursday in the Netherlands. 

His sentence of 10 years and eight months was the maximum sought by prosecutors. Dutch authorities said the decision was based on Coban's risk to reoffend.​

A press release from the Dutch court said Coban "deceived tenants, committed computer intrusion and blackmailed a man online by pretending to be a boy who was looking for sexual contacts."

Former lawyer

Coban's lawyer Robert Malewicz didn't specify the grounds on which the latest appeal will be based.

But on Thursday, a former lawyer for Coban said he expected the case would be appealed to the European Court, in part because of the surveillance tools used by investigators.

"In my vision, the court made a mistake by accepting the use of the keylogger. The European Court is very strict when it comes to privacy and I expect that if this case will be handled by the European Court, there will be a whole other outcome," Christian van Dijk wrote to CBC News in an email.

"The question will be if the use of secret surveillance tools by governmental organizations are accepted, and if so, what are the requirements. ... This case will have influence on many other judgments in Europe."

Keyloggers are hardware devices that capture computer keystrokes. They can be used to gather personal information like usernames and passwords by tracking each letter and number pressed on a keyboard.​

Amanda Todd case

On Friday, Dan McLaughlin with the B.C. Criminal Justice Branch said that process could "further delay his extradition" to Canada.

Coban was charged in relation to the Todd case in 2014. 

Two years earlier, Todd — who was 15 at the time — committed suicide after posting a video on YouTube saying she had been blackmailed by someone online.

Charges against Coban include possession of child pornography, extortion, internet luring, criminal harassment and distribution of child pornography.

He is slated to be extradited for that trial after the Dutch proceedings wrap up, although he has appealed to stay in the Netherlands.

The decision on that appeal of the extradition is expected on April 4.

McLaughlin said if that extradition is approved and the appeal on the verdict is dismissed, Coban will be flown to Canada.

"It would not be necessary to wait until his sentence in the Netherlands is served," McLaughlin said.

But if Coban's appeal of his Dutch conviction goes ahead, he will likely remain in the Netherlands until that is resolved.

Amanda Todd, 15, is shown in this undated handout photo from one of the many Facebook memorial sites set up after her death. (The Canadian Press)