In the midst of a human trafficking investigation, a couple from Simcoe County took the stand in a Bradford courtroom this past Thursday. The initial court appearance was made by Amber Maloney and Lauriston Maloney, as conveyed by their defense counsel, Robert Ratusny, outside the courthouse.
Lauriston Maloney, a 42-year-old registered sex offender, and Amber Maloney, aged 36, faced arrest in July under a series of charges. These included human trafficking, administration of a noxious substance, fraud, assault, and forcible confinement. These events unfolded merely hours subsequent to a rare public safety advisory issued by Ontario police about Lauriston’s history involving minors.
Upon the release of this advisory, it was revealed by the police that Lauriston, with a history of convictions for trafficking and sexual offences involving minors, posed a significant threat to public safety. They indicated that he regularly visited the ‘Beating the Odds’ children’s camp—an establishment owned and supervised by his wife, Amber, on their sprawling two-acre farm located in Essa Township.
However, a ban on publication safeguards any evidence brought to light in the courtroom from public release, and police have shed some insight, stating that the charges against the accused couple do not pertain to any minors at the unlicensed camp.
In an interview with CTV News earlier this year on July 18, Lauriston shared insights into his previous convictions stating he was guilty of helms an escort agency from 2002 to 2004. He conceded that one of these girls was a minor, though argued she had falsified her age. Despite confessing to his past actions, Lauriston fervently defended his stance, insisting he played no role in his wife’s business, and refuted the predatory accusations levelled against him. The following day after the interview, Lauriston and Amber were arrested.
Post their arrest, the Maloney’s were subsequently released on bail, with their respective parents committing to a surety of $10,000 each. The terms of Lauriston’s bail require him to stay with his father and wear an ankle monitor, and inhibit his communication with multiple people, including alleged victims and witnesses.
Robert Ratusny, their defense counsel, stated the couple has been complying with the bail terms, with no reported issues or further allegations against them. As of now, the couple is due to reappear in court on October 19.
The allegations levelled against Amber and Lauriston Maloney have yet to be verified in a court of law.