02/07/2012 02:58 EST | Updated 04/08/2012 05:12 EDT

B.C. Youth Faces 47 Online Child Luring Charges

A 17-year-old youth from Trail, B.C. is facing charges relating to allegedly luring children into performing sex acts and setting up meetings on social media sites.

The youth, who cannot be named because of his age, is facing 47 counts including personation with intent, extortion, uttering threats, communication via computer to lure a child under the age of 18, obtaining sexual services of a person under the age of 18 and invitation to sexual touching.

Sgt. Rob Vermeulen said the charges are the result of an ongoing police investigation into allegations of inappropriate behavior by the suspect with victims residing in the Trail and the greater district area between 2009 and 2011.

"It is believed that the suspect communicated with the victims for the purpose of having them perform sexual acts over their web cameras and to arrange face to face meetings with them," said Vermeulen.

The children were between 10 and 14 years old, according to Vermeulen.

The RCMP emphasised the need for all parents to carefully monitor their children’s activity on social media sites and to educate them in online safety.

The police say their investigation is ongoing and additional charges could be laid.