Accused Kelowna pimp could face four years in prison - InfoNews

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Accused Kelowna pimp could face four years in prison

Simon Rypiak, 35, could face four years in prison for his work as pimp in Kelowna in 2015.
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April 23, 2019 - 1:47 PM

KELOWNA - In the spring and summer of 2015, Simon Rypiak ran a prostitution ring in Kelowna. He pled guilty to several related charges earlier this year and appeared in court today for his sentencing, which could be as high as four years in prison.

Rypiak, 35, appeared in Kelowna Supreme Court on April 23 for sentencing in relation to his involvement as a pimp for four women in Kelowna nearly four years ago.

After a series of delays, Rypiak pled guilty to five charges on Feb. 4 of this year, a few months before his trial was scheduled to begin. Rypiak pled guilty to four counts of procuring (facilitating a sex worker's interactions with a client) and one count of benefit from sexual services. He originally faced 14 charges, including sexual assault.

At the sentencing hearing, Crown lawyer Patricia O'Neil outlined the agreed-upon facts of the case. She noted how Rypiak met four women online throughout 2015 and persuaded them to work as prostitutes. A publication ban protects the identities of these women.

The first woman Rypiak met worked for him for approximately seven months, earning an estimated $100,000. According to O'Neil, the woman and Rypiak traveled to Edmonton in September 2015 and got into an argument, which resulted in the woman returning to Kelowna and reporting Rypiak's activities to the police.

The three other women worked for much shorter periods; one woman only worked for a single day. Rypiak often contacted these women through the online dating site PlentyOfFish. After several conversations, Rypiak would often convince the women to meet at a hotel or motel and make arrangements for work.

The first woman who worked for Rypiak was the only one who filed a victim impact statement, which O'Neil read aloud in the courtroom. The woman noted how the experience has been burned into her memory, often triggering her and causing depression.

O'Neil noted Rypiak's Aboriginal status and said a Gladue report had been filed before sentencing. She said his guilty pleas were mitigating factors.

O'Neil said a total sentence of four years in prison would be appropriate for all five charges.

Rypiak's lawyer, Richard Cairns, did not disagree with O'Neil's position, as the requested sentence was a joint submission. He argued that Rypiak should receive credit for time served on his bail. Cairn said Rypiak's bail order, which he has been under for several years, has been particularly restrictive and onerous. Guilty parties typically receive credit of one-and-a-half day for every day served in custody.

Cairn is expected to continue his arguments later today, after which Justice Allan Betton will pass his sentence.

Rypiak, who sat quietly in the courtroom during the proceedings, was joined by several family members and friends.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Sean Mott or call (250) 864-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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