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Whitehorse man sentenced to 10 years in prison for exploiting teen

A close-up of the sign on the side of the courthouse in Whitehorse. (Jackie Hong/CBC - image credit)
A close-up of the sign on the side of the courthouse in Whitehorse. (Jackie Hong/CBC - image credit)

A Whitehorse man who exploited a teen girl for months was handed a 10-year prison sentence Wednesday.

Kevin Sweeney was found guilty on nine charges in November.

The court found that in 2018, he offered "safe" housing to an Indigenous girl from a rural Yukon community who was in Whitehorse to attend high school. But over a period of 10 months while she was in his home, he assaulted her, plied her with drugs and alcohol, and sexually assaulted her.

Sweeney was 49 at the time.

On Wednesday, Yukon Supreme Court Justice Karen Wenckebach said the abuse the victim suffered was "extensive."

She said there were few mitigating factors to consider in sentencing Sweeney.

Wenckebach noted that Sweeney was a person of trust and authority over a minor, who was away from her parents and knew few people in Whitehorse.

Sweeney was sentenced to 10 years in prison, less 47 days for time already spent in custody.