Wednesday, July 9, 1997

p. B2.

Former counsellor jailed in sex case

A former native Indian youth worker received a one-month sentence Tuesday for trying to obtain sex from a minor.

Vancouver provincial court Judge Herb Weitzel said he sent John Makowski, 40, to jail to send a strong message that the exploitation of child prostitutes will not be tolerated.

Makowski worked as a counsellor with the Urban Native Youth Association when he was arrested last November with a 16-year-old prostitute. Weitzel said Makowski should have been aware of the terrible effects of prostitution on juveniles, given his work experience.

Defence lawyer Joanne Challenger said her client is extremely remorseful and was experiencing stress at the time of the incident. She noted that his common-law wife, who continues to support him, was ill and they were not having a sexual relationship at the time.

Makowski has since lost his counselling job.

Crown counsel Phil Sebellin submitted 11 letters of condemnation from the community. John Turvey of the Downtown Eastside Youth Society also submitted a letter in which he noted the Makowski incident has made it more difficult for counsellors to gain the trust of youth.

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Created: July 15, 1997
Last modified: July 15, 1997

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