The U.S. suspect accused of kidnapping and committing sexual offences against a 13-year-old Edmonton girl made his first court appearance in Oregon City, Ore. Tuesday.
Noah Madrano, 40, appeared in Clackamas County Circuit Court. He faces state charges of kidnapping, rape and sexual abuse.
Madrano remains in custody and his bail was set at $500,000.
In an email Tuesday, Clackamas County Chief Deputy District Attorney Chris Owen said United States federal charges are also expected to be laid.
Oregon City is about 20 kilometres southeast of Portland, Ore.
The girl was reported missing on June 24 after she did not attend school or return to her Edmonton home that afternoon.
Edmonton Police Service announced Saturday she had been found in Oregon. The girl was with the suspect, EPS Insp. Brent Dahlseide said at a news conference.
The girl, who CBC is not identifying, was reunited with her family and has returned home, her father said Monday.
Edmonton police have said they plan to lay a child luring charge and possibly other local charges against Madrano.
Asked about the possibility of seeking to extradite Madrano to Canada, an Alberta Justice spokesperson referred questions to Edmonton police. An Edmonton police spokesperson said no updates were available Tuesday.
Investigators have not released any details about how the young Edmonton girl got across the border.
Officials, experts warn of rise in luring
The Canadian Centre for Child Protection said it is seeing an alarming increase in reports of children being lured online.
There has been a 120 per cent increase in reports of online child luring over the last six months, said Stephen Sauer, director of Cybertip.ca at the centre. Cybertip is Canada’s tip line for reporting online child sexual abuse.
“They are really looking at the vulnerability of the child and exploiting that,” Sauer said.
About 50 per cent of the reports are related to extortion, he said. People create fake social media accounts, contact children and ask them to share an intimate image or video.
The user then threatens that they will share it with family, friends or the child’s school if they do not provide money or further images.
Sauer said situations where a person online meets up with the child are much rarer.
David Finkelhor, director of the Crimes against Children Research Center at the University of New Hampshire, said there are about 800 to 1,000 child luring cases a year where children are taken or travel across state lines in the United States.
When it comes to cases where a child is lured across an international border between Canada and the United States, the numbers are less clear but he’s seen a handful of cases make the news.
Both Finkelhor and Sauer encourage parents to speak with their children about their online activities and the risks that can come through interactions on social media and chats.