March 16, 2017 / 3:42 PM / 4 months ago

Dutch suspect in Amanda Todd case gets 10-year sentence for cyber-bullying

2 Min Read

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - A Dutchman who convinced young girls and gay men to take off their clothes in front of web cams and then used the images to blackmail them was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison by a Dutch court on Wednesday.

Aydin Coban, 38, is also wanted in Canada as a suspect in the case of Amanda Todd, a teenager who sparked an international debate over cyber-bullying when she posted a YouTube video detailing her online harassment by an unknown tormenter.

Coban denies wrongdoing in the Todd case.

The Amsterdam District Court convicted him for fraud and blackmail involving more 34 other girls and five gay men. The court said Coban first won their trust and convinced them to send him compromising sexual images.

Then he began to demand more and threatened to expose naked images of them if they refused.

"These were not idle threats," the court said in a summary of its ruling. "If a girl didn't comply with his demands, then (Coban) did not hesitate to send sexual images to the family or friends of the victim."

Judges said Coban's sentence, the maximum possible, reflected the "devastating" impact his actions had on his victims' lives.

Canada has sought Coban's extradition, a process that is continuing. Todd committed suicide at the age of 15.

Reporting by Toby Sterling; Editing by Hugh Lawson

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