[from Xtra.ca] A Winnipeg prostitute who is featured in a local art exhibit is facing deportation to a country he hasn't lived in since he was a boy.

Jammy Reyes has built a following on the popular website Xtube.com. His personal story of drugs, crime, life on the streets and now, possible deportation, illustrates the contradictory attitudes that Canadian society has about poverty, prostitution and porn.

"I treat Canada as my country," says Reyes, a thin, boyish 24-year-old who came to Winnipeg from the Philippines when he was 11 with his sister and aunt. "I don't see myself being thrown into another country."

When Reyes was 16, he dropped out of high school and fled his family home. "I was curious about having sex with guys," he says. He went to Assiniboine Ave, long known as a gay cruising ground. "That's where you start off and that's where you start learning," he says.

Reyes met a couple of guys named Sweet Pea and Little John. "You should sell yourself," they said. "You're young and cute."

Reyes tried ecstasy. Then, shortly after he turned 18, he got addicted to crack cocaine and crystal meth. "That's when I turned really bad," he says.

In order to feed his addiction, Reyes needed more money. He started stealing clients' credit cards and threatening his aunt. He spent 15 months in jail and six months in rehab, and is almost finished a two-year probation.

Reyes' aunt, who has a restraining order against her nephew, never applied for him to become a Canadian citizen, nor did Reyes. Last month, he faced a judge to plead his case against deportation.

"I'm just so scared to think about that," says Reyes. But he doesn't believe he should be sent back to the Philippines. "I did something bad but they were petty crimes and I did my time," he says.

Reyes is returning to class next month, to finish his high school degree. He eventually wants to enrol in a culinary arts program. In the meantime, he's still struggling with drug addiction. "It takes time for people to change," he says.

He also wants to build on his Xtube fan base. "I've always wanted to be a porn star," he says. "It's a fantasy for me. I like being complimented. It's a self-esteem boost."

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