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Nine arrested in Internet child sex investigation

Posted: 10:19 AM, Nov 25, 2019
Updated: 2019-11-25 12:20:01-05
Court documents: Ohio man sexually Skyped Valley County kids

BOISE, Idaho — Nine men have been arrested in what Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden calls “the results of a joint operation that targeted child sexual abuse in the Treasure Valley over the weekend.”

The project was a cooperative effort between federal, state and local agencies. Homeland Security Investigations organized and supervised the operation. Idaho State Police, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Idaho, the Ada County Prosecutor’s Office, the Meridian Police Department, and the Attorney General’s Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Unit served as lead agencies.

The Friday, Saturday and Sunday operation resulted in the arrests of nine people. Five face prosecution for state charges and four have been referred for federal charges. Suspects were booked into the Ada County Jail.

“This operation took nine dangerous child predators off the streets,” said Eben Roberts, acting special agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Seattle.

Circumstances and details of the arrests were not immediately available.

Those arrested were:

Jesse A. Kelly-Castillo, 23, Boise, was arrested Friday. He faces a federal charge of coercion and enticement.

Trevor M. Byram, 25, of Boise, was arrested Friday. He faces a state charge of enticing a child through use of the internet or other communication device.

Maxwell G. Hennerley, 23, of Boise, was arrested Friday. He faces a federal charge of coercion and enticement.

Joshua R. Schmitz, 33, of Garden City, was arrested Saturday. He faces a state charge of enticing a child through use of the internet or other communication device.

Shawn M. Reber, 27, of Fruitland, was arrested Saturday. He faces a state charge of enticing a child through use of the internet or other communication device.

Seth M. Holden, 29, of Garden City, was arrested Saturday. He faces a state charge of enticing a child through use of the internet or other communication device.

Vern L. Moore, 55, of Kuna, was arrested Sunday. He faces a federal charge of coercion and enticement [idaho.us16.list-manage.com].

Patrick P. Telleria, 35, of Boise, was arrested Sunday. He faces a state charge of enticing a child through use of the internet or other communication device.

Jordan M. Drake, 32, of Boise, was arrested Sunday. He faces a federal charge of coercion and enticement.

Participating agencies also included the Ada County Sheriff’s Office, United States Postal Inspection Service, Rupert Police Department and Jerome County Sheriff’s Office.

“I continue to be proud of the efforts of Idaho’s local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies to protect children from child exploitation, including the efforts and results of this weekend’s joint operation,” U.S. Attorney for the District of Idaho Bart Davis said.

Idaho State Police provided facilities and numerous other resources for the project.

“The sad fact is Idaho’s children are at risk from on-line predators,” said Idaho State Police Director Col. Kedrick Wills. “The work done in operations like this one is extremely difficult, but it’s also essential for the safety of Idaho’s youngest and often most vulnerable citizens. At Idaho State Police, we’re committed to supporting these joint projects. More Idaho children are safe today because of what these operations are able to accomplish.”

“Holding offenders accountable for crimes against our children is a top priority for my office and for law enforcement,” Ada County Prosecutor Jan Bennetts said.

“While technology has improved our lives immensely, unfortunately when used inappropriately it has also made it much easier for predators to prey on children,” Meridian Deputy Police Chief Tracy Basterrechea said. “Hopefully this operation helps send the message will not tolerate these crimes in our community.”

Anyone with information regarding the exploitation of children is encouraged to contact local police, the Attorney General’s ICAC Unit at 208-947-8700, or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-843-5678.