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TORONTO – Here’s something a local TV station newscast never wants to do: Global Television B.C. on Tuesday reported that one of its top award-winning TV reporters has been charged with five sex-related criminal charges involving a minor.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police has charged Ron Bencze, 44, with sexual assault, two counts of sexual interference with a person under the age of 16 and two more counts of invitation to sexual touching.
Bencze has been a TV reporter for Global Television B.C., the Vancouver affiliate of the national TV network, since 2004.
“Mr. Bencze was very involved in the community and we ask anybody who has any information in regards to Mr. Bencze’s relationships within the community to come forward with any information that might be pertinent to this investigation,” RCMP Cpl. Drew Grainger told reporters in Surrey, a suburb of Vancouver where Bencze lives with his wife and three childen, that the TV reporter was arrested on Monday night.
Bencze made an appearance in Surrey Provincial Court on Tuesday before being conditionally released on bail. He is scheduled to return for a second court appearance on Feb. 7.
Grainger said the offenses involved an unnamed minor who approached the Surrey RCMP detachment on Sunday with allegations of sexual assault and abuse that apparently took place over a period between 2001 and 2011.
Global BC News Director Ian Haysom in a statement said the TV station was “very concerned” about the allegations against Bencze, but will issue no additional comment until it learns more about the case.
Bencze earned an award for his coverage of the trial of Vancouver serial murder Robert Pickton.
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