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Former Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre exec pleads guilty to child-luring charges

Chris Beaton appeared by telephone in provincial court in Nanaimo on Wednesday, Feb. 16
Former Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre executive Chris Beaton. (News Bulletin file)

The former executive director of the Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre has pleaded guilty to child-luring charges.

Christopher Robin Beaton pleaded guilty on two charges of telecommunicating to lure a child under 18 from incidents alleged to have occurred on Dec. 29, 2018 and Feb. 24, 2020. Speaking through Chris Churchill, his legal representative, in B.C. provincial court in Nanaimo, Beaton admitted to the essential elements of the charges. Beaton appeared via video.

By pleading guilty, Beaton realizes he is waiving his right to trial, Churchill told the court.

A Gladue report and a psychological assessment were ordered by Judge Justine Saunders.

In a July social media post, Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre said it was “disturbed by the nature of the charges” and felt “angry and betrayed.” Beaton has not been employed by the centre since March 2021, the centre said at that time, and won’t be returning.

Churchill said he and Nick Barber, Crown counsel, are hoping reports are received by April 19, when a date for disposition is expected to be established.

RELATED: Ex-Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre exec faces child luring charges

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Nanaimo Courthouse. (News Bulletin file photo)