The former leader of a Canadian LGBTQ pride group in British Columbia has been accused of sex crimes against children.
The suspect is identified as 39-year-old Sean Gravells, who is the former board president of the North Peace Pride Society (NPPS), CBC reported January 8.
An image shows the suspect in the case:
BREAKING: Sean Gravells, an outspoken LGBTQ activist and President of an LGBTQ pride organization in Canada was arrested for se* crimes against children and possessing and distributing child p*rn*grap*y pic.twitter.com/dSSX6SEBsx
— Libs of TikTok (@libsoftiktok) January 10, 2024
According to the outlet, charges against the man “include touching a person under 16 for sexual purposes, sexual interference of a person under 16, possession of child pornography, and importing or distributing child pornography, BCPS spokesperson Dan McLaughlin told CBC News in an emailed statement on Monday.”
McLaughlin noted the alleged instances happened in or near Fort St. John and “the interference and exploitation charges are for alleged offences on Dec. 29, 2023, while the child pornography charges occurred on Dec. 31, he added,” the CBC report said.
In a social media post on Wednesday, the Post Millennial’s Senior Editor Andy Ngô shared a statement from NPPS and noted the organization did not name Gravells or the nature of the accusations levied against him.
“The group works closely with children through their youth programs,” Ngô wrote. In its statement, NPPS said it had “removed this person from our board, emphasizing our commitment to our community’s values”:
The LGBTQ+ organization Sean Gravells ran released a statement not identifying it was their president who was arrested nor the nature of his alleged child sex crimes. The group works closely with children through their youth programs. pic.twitter.com/kL8MpnnoEc
— Andy Ngô 🏳️🌈 (@MrAndyNgo) January 11, 2024
NPPS also said, “We want to clarify that the society itself is not implicated in any charges; these are isolated to the individual.”
According to the group’s website, members “work to empower, celebrate, promote inclusivity & respect among people of all sexual orientation + gender identity within the North Peace area. We’re provincially registered & incorporated as a non-profit society, under the BC Society Act.”
According to the NPPS Facebook page, the organization has advertised numerous events for children and youth.
One event was at a local library for young people to celebrate so-called “pride month”:
Thank you to the Fort St. John Public Library for having this safe space for the youth to celebrate pride month with games, activities, food and beverages!
“Thank you to the Fort St. John Public Library for having this safe space for the youth to celebrate pride month with games, activities, food and beverages!” the group’s post from June read.