Toronto human trafficking accused has Halifax ties
Brandon Fraser, 29, faces 10 charges related to human trafficking and prostitution
A 29-year-old man with Halifax ties was arrested in Toronto this week and faces several charges related to human trafficking.
Halifax Regional Police say Brandon Fraser, 29, is known to them.
Just last spring, Fraser was sentenced in Nova Scotia for resisting a peace officer and failure to comply with conditions.
He has much more on his criminal record, but those other charges pale in comparison to the 10 charges he now faces in Ontario.
Toronto police allege Fraser recruited and forced a woman into prostitution.
Detectives believe he held the woman captive, as well as her money and property. Details of the woman and her situation aren't being released but the prostitution link between Nova Scotia and Ontario has been active for years.
Human trafficking activist Lia Renaud said it's a dark secret many in Nova Scotia don't realize.
'It's happening everywhere'
"It's happening in our communities. It's happening everywhere. It's not going to stop. This is a multi-million dollar industry," she said.
That's why Renaud wants to get information about child luring into the schools.
"It's becoming more prevalent that young people are going on the internet, and predators are using the internet as a way to reel-in vulnerable individuals," she said.
Another target on Renaud's list — truck stops.
Across North America, Renaud said they're known as a prostitution breeding ground.
Groups in the U.S. and Ontario have DVD copies of a video in truck stops that raises awareness about the issue.
Renaud hopes to do the same in Nova Scotia, so truckers know what's going on.
"They're the eyes of the highway and they're able to see a lot. It gives some information about what human trafficking is, the indicators of somebody who may be trafficked, and really it provides them the information that they need so if they see something, they can report it," said Renaud.
She's still trying to convince Circle K-Irving stations to allow space for the free DVD.
Renaud said she's focusing on that particular chain because its truck stops are scattered along the Trans-Canada Highway all the way into Quebec.
"I'm hoping with the recent cases and more talk about it within the community that they'll be open to having this available," said Renaud.
Fraser is due back in court in Toronto on Monday.
Toronto police say Fraser may have more victims and have released his picture, with the hope that some of those victims come forward.