“HSI, working alongside our law enforcement partners, is deeply committed to pursuing alleged predators lurking within our communities seeking to harm and exploit our most vulnerable population,” said Scott Brown, special agent in charge for Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Phoenix. “This multi-agency effort epitomizes our ongoing mission in Arizona and is a testament to the men and woman who working [are] these heinous cases.”
Officials said the arrests were the result of a monthslong operation to combat child sexual exploitation in Pinal County, Arizona, adding that a number of agencies were involved in the sting.
Ryan Kellerman, 36; Daniel May, 40; Matthew Salley, 38; Christopher Butts, 44; and Jordan Holloway, 26, were arrested in the sting, the HSI said.
It noted that Butts is a former Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office detective who was arrested in February on sexual exploitation charges. He was charged last week with luring a minor for sexual exploitation and furnishing harmful items to a minor.
May, Salley, Kellerman, and Holloway were charged with luring a minor for sexual exploitation, while Kellerman also faces the additional charge of furnishing harmful items to a minor. He is also the subject of an investigation by the Maricopa Police Department.
“This is an ongoing investigation and additional arrests are pending. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law,” HSI officials wrote.