The New Brunswick RCMP says a 20-year-old Fredericton man has been charged with numerous offences, including child luring, sexual exploitation and sexual assault, after targeting girls in the Fredericton and Oromocto areas.

Police are looking to speak with anyone who may have had interactions - in person or online - with an individual on Snapchat with the user names, "M_vixin20," or "Abo_issauk". The individual is believed to have driven a mid or dark grey 2013 four-door Ford Focus, with license plate number JFU 475.

"We believe this man targeted teenaged girls by using the 'add friends nearby' function in Snapchat, while near schools in the Fredericton and Oromocto areas," said Corporal Hans Ouellette of the New Brunswick RCMP. "If you were contacted by this man, if you exchanged photos with this person, especially if you met up with him – we want to talk to you to help our investigation. You are not in trouble. We want to support you."

The investigation began on June 12th, when the RCMP received a report regarding three girls in the Oromocto area. Each of the girls reported being approached by an individual on the social media channel, Snapchat, between January and June of this year. The girls all reported meeting up with a man on various occasions between April and June, when they were sexually assaulted.

On June 12, police identified a person of interest, and made arrangements to interview the man but learned shortly after that he had fled the area. Police were able to track his movements to Ontario, with the assistance of Hamilton Police Service, Ontario Provincial Police, Toronto Police Service and Peel Regional Police.

On the afternoon of Saturday, June 18, Toronto Police arrested 20-year-old Firas Alobaid of Fredericton in connection with the investigation. On Monday, June 20, members of the New Brunswick RCMP escorted the man back to Fredericton on a charge of sexual assault.

Alobaid appeared in Fredericton Provincial Court on Monday and was charged with:  Six counts of sexual assault, Five counts of sexual interference of a minor, Three counts of sexual exploitation, Three counts of child luring by telecommunication, Possession of a firearm for a dangerous purpose, Uttering threats.  He was remanded in custody pending a bail hearing on Thursday, June 23 in Fredericton Provincial Court.

The RCMP is continuing to investigate.

Anyone who interacted with Firas Alobaid on social media, or who has information that may help the investigation, is asked to contact the Oromocto RCMP at 506-357-3400. Information can also be provided anonymously through New Brunswick Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

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