FOND DU LAC, Sask. - A Mountie posted in a remote fly-in community in northern Saskatchewan has been charged with accessing and possessing child pornography.
RCMP said they began investigating the officer stationed in Fond-du-Lac in September.
Staff Sgt. Ron Weir with the province's Internet Exploitation Unit said officers had been conducting an internal police investigation into file sharing and were tracing IP addresses when they identified the fellow Mountie as a suspect.
"It's very disturbing when any member of a law enforcement agency in Canada or around the world is into this type of material," Weir told reporters Tuesday. "It was quite disappointing and disturbing as police officer that we would have to investigate one of our own."
Const. Aiden Arthur Pratchett, 31, joined the force in 2010 and served in the town of Porcupine Plain before he was transferred to Fond-du-Lac.
Personal computer devices were seized from his home in the northern community in October and he was removed from the northern community and suspended with pay.
He was arrested and charged Monday and released from custody on the conditions that he have no Internet access, not possess data storage devices and stay away from children. He is to appear in appear in Prince Albert provincial court on Jan. 28.
Supt. Alfredo Bangloy said a code of conduct investigation is continuing and the officer could receive further work penalties now that he faces criminal charges.
He said it's very disappointing to see a Mountie charged with such offences, considering all officers are supposed to follow a high standard of conduct.
Weir added that there is no evidence suggesting the officer knew the children pictured in the pornography. He said the criminal investigation is also continuing and further charges could be laid.