UPDATE: Operation ICE Storm II Results in Arrests of Child Porn Offenders

Calgary… Eight Albertans have been charged with child sexual exploitation offences as the result of Operation ICE Storm II, an Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT) operation.

ALERT’s Internet Child Exploitation (ICE) investigation spanned seven months and relied on the assistance of Calgary Police Service (CPS), Medicine Hat Police Service (MHPS), Lethbridge Regional Police Service (LRPS), and RCMP members.

The proactive operation focused on high-level targets that were sharing and distributing vast collections of child sexual exploitation photos and videos. The file sharing occurred across a variety of peer-to-peer file trading networks.

Between September 2014 and March 2015, 16 search warrants were executed, resulting in the arrest of eight individuals and the seizure of 85 computers and electronic devices. More than 14 terabytes of data were analyzed by forensic technicians, and 100,000 photos and videos of child exploitation were identified.

Some of the victims in the photos are estimated to be as young as six months old and depict extreme sexual abuse.

At this point of the investigation, ICE investigators do not believe any of the victims are from Alberta, or that any hands-on offences had taken place. Anyone with information about this investigation, or any child exploitation offence is encouraged to contact police or cybertip.ca.

The accused range in age from 27 to 60, with the charges including of possessing, accessing, and making available child pornography. None of the accused are considered to be in positions of public trust and/or authority.

  • Luis Bexiga, 37, of Calgary;
  • Daniel Clarke-Ferr, 47, of Calgary;
  • Brad Drummond, 33, of Calgary;
  • Michael Hilles, 40, of Calgary;
  • Colin Penner, 60, of Sherwood Park;
  • Eduardo Ramirez, 46, of Calgary;
  • Marc Sicotte, 33, of Chipman;
  • Keith Vittie, 27, of Calgary;

In addition, Bexiga faces 13 other related charges. Clarke-Ferr faces seven other related charges.

The first edition of Operation ICE Storm concluded in April 2014 with the arrest of 10 offenders.

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. Members of Alberta Sheriffs, Calgary Police Service, Edmonton Police Service, Lethbridge Regional Police Service, Medicine Hat Police Service, and RCMP work in ALERT.

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Members of the public who suspect drug or gang activity in their community can call local police, or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
Crime Stoppers is always anonymous.

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.