Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe says allegations that a legislature member procured sex are vile and disgusting.
Moe told reporters Monday he took immediate action to remove Ryan Domotor from government caucus after police informed the premier of a charge involving the Saskatchewan Party backbencher.
“This is not acceptable in any way, by myself, by this government, and most certainly terrible,” he said.
Domotor, who now sits as an Independent, was arrested last week at a Regina business, where he was accused of seeking to obtain sexual services.
The vice unit had conducted a sting operation to combat sexual exploitation and human trafficking, and arrested 16 people, including Domotor.
Regina police said Monday the sting took place at a hotel, but it could not provide more details on the location due to the covert nature of the operation.
Lindsey Hoemsen, a police spokesperson, said in an email the public was not at risk.
“This type of project is something that the vice unit carries out several times a year to proactively combat sexual exploitation and human trafficking,” Hoemsen said.
Moe said it’s wrong for people to exploit women who are in vulnerable situations.
“The way to stop that from happening is for men to make a different decision and for men to not make the decision to exploit women that are most, quite often, in a very vulnerable position,” he said.
Moe has removed Domotor from all of his responsibilities. Domotor is to no longer be a candidate for next year’s provincial election, the premier added.
He said his government plans to make amendments to human trafficking legislation, adding the province has offered operational funding to some second-stage shelters.
Carla Beck, the Opposition NDP leader, said Moe’s talk of doing more rings hollow when the province has among the highest rates of domestic violence and human trafficking.
“It seems this is a government too focused on kids’ pronouns or trips to Dubai or putting out fires in their own caucus than to focus on health care and to focus on women,” she told the assembly.
Data from the Justice Ministry says as of November, those who have been sexually assaulted have waited about three to six months to see a counsellor in northern Saskatchewan.