Tapping into the vulnerabilities of women he found on the dating website Plenty of Fish, Kelowna resident Simon Rypiak created a small pimping operation.
Now, four years later, he’s facing a four-year prison sentence.
Rypiak pleaded guilty in February to four counts of procuring adults to offer sexual services and one count of obtaining a material benefit from sexual services.
The details behind those charges were revealed in court Tuesday as his sentencing hearing got underway.
Crown counsel Patricia O’Neil read from a statement of fact highlighting how Rypiak lured four women between the ages of 18 and 19 years old into prostitution for anywhere from a day to seven months.
The most significant allegations against Rypiak came from a woman with whom he was in a relationship with. Her name, as well as the names of his other three victims, are covered under a publication ban.
O’Neil told B.C. Supreme Court Justice Allan Betton that Rypiak struck up a relationship with the woman he met over Plenty of Fish in January 2015.
They met in person and one night together turned into three. She told Rypiak in their conversations that she had worked at a massage parlour and had offered sexual services to people there.
Later, when he thought she was in love with him, Rypiak convinced her that they could have a good life together if she continued selling sex.
The first thing he did to get her on that path was convince her to have sex with his friend for $200, said O’Neil.
Once she’d done that, he started to pimp her out using the “back pages.”
“He decided the service she’d provide,” said O’Neil, adding that he also set out an earning quota of $1,000 a day, which required long hours six to seven days a week.
Over the seven months she worked for him, she believes she earned $100,00.
All of that money Rypiak kept, though he did divert a portion of funds to her needs.
In time that woman was instrumental in luring three other women into the fold and setting up their profiles.
According to the statement of fact, they lasted from as little as one day to several months and had more freedom than the woman with whom Rypiak had a relationship, choosing the services they provided and receiving proceeds from the work they were doing.
They also were free to leave.
The woman who had struck up a relationship with Rypiak, told him she wanted to stop at one point, said O’Neil, but he wouldn’t let her.
In a victim impact statement, the woman said that she has yet to recover from her time with Rypiak.
She’s been diagnosed with depression and anxiety, and has tried to take her own life on several occasions.
She said that she’s grown distant from others, shying away from their touch and tuning inward. Plagued by nightmares, she wakes up in a sweat.
What’s most consoling to her is that “science says that in seven years” all your skin has been shed, said O’Neil, reading from the letter.
That means soon enough that Rypiak’s touch, and the touch of all the others she met while with him, will finally be shed.
Justice Betton handed down his sentence after the Capital News press deadline.