B.C. pedophile ‘Swirl Face’ sentenced to 5.5 years


NEW WESTMINSTER, B.C. – A British Columbia pedophile convicted of producing online child pornography in Cambodia where he disguised his face with a swirl has been sentenced to five-and-a-half-years in prison.

But because of his time already served, a B.C. Supreme Court judge has ruled Christopher Neil’s remaining sentence is just over 14 months, six months more time than the Crown had requested.

The 41-year-old man pleaded guilty in December to five child-sex crimes that took place in Cambodia, as well as Vancouver and Maple Ridge, B.C., spanning a 10-year period.

Judge John Harvey says the sentence reflects the gravity of the crimes and high moral culpability of Neil, noting that he not only victimized two young boys by manufacturing child pornography but harmed them again by posting videos online.

Neil has been held in custody since the RCMP Child Exploitation Unit arrested him two years ago following a sweeping investigation in B.C. and Cambodia.

At his April sentencing hearing, the man who was dubbed “Swirl Face” by international media apologized to his victims and said he intends to change his behaviour.

Neil has also served nearly five years in a Thailand prison for the unrelated sexual abuse of two boys, but was released early and returned to Canada in the fall of 2012.