Following a joint investigation between ALERT’s Internet Child Exploitation (ICE) Unit and Wainwright RCMP, a 30-year-old man has been charged with multiple instances of online child luring.
Jesse Keller was arrested on May 6, 2020, at his home in Wainwright, Alta.
He was charged with child luring; sexual assault; extortion; invitation to sexual touching; making sexually explicit material available to a child; making arrangements for a sexual offence against a child; and possession of child pornography.
Keller allegedly lured and extorted at least three victims through a variety of online social media applications.
In one instance, Keller allegedly met and sexually assaulted one of the victims.
ICE is gathering more information about the case by conducting an examination and forensic analysis of computers and electronic devices seized from Keller’s home.
Anyone with information about this investigation, or any child exploitation offence is encouraged to contact local police or cybertip.ca.
“Increased online activity during isolation puts children at risk of being taken advantage of,” said Cpl. Kirk Smith, Wainwright RCMP. “We are asking all parents to be aware of who their children are chatting with online and the type of conversations that are taking place.”
Wainwright RCMP received multiple complaints about an unknown suspect dating back to January 2019.
ICE became involved in the investigation in April 2020 and, working in collaboration with the Wainwright RCMP, the joint investigation into these allegations culminated in the execution of multiple search warrants and the arrest of the accused.
Wainwright is located approximately 200 kilometres southeast of Edmonton.
The Canadian Centre for Child Protection offers reminders for youth who may be dealing with online blackmail or extortion: Never comply with the threat; Stop all forms of communication with the individual (block from accounts); Deactivate all accounts used to communicate with the individual; Speak to a safe adult about what is happening; Contact Cybertip.ca or police.
ALERT was established and is funded by the Alberta Government and is a compilation of the province’s most sophisticated law enforcement resources committed to tackling serious and organized crime.