U.S. Customs and Border Protection provided an answer Thursday as to how convicted sex offender Benjamin Martin Moore crossed the border into the United States.
According to a statement from the agency, Moore, along with his common-law partner and her two children “crossed into the United States illegally by driving through a barbed wire fence located near the Turner Port of Entry.”
That border crossing is straight south of Climax in southwestern Saskatchewan. It’s the crossing closest to their home in Eastend.
“Havre Border Patrol Station agents detected a cut fence while routinely patrolling along the international boundary,” the border agency added. “Havre Sector Border Patrol reached out to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police through the Integrated Border Enforcement Team (IBET) charter to assist in the identification of the subject.
“The man not only crossed the border illegally but also had a lookout for kidnapping as well as a history of sexual assault and child pornography.”
The four people were found Tuesday night at a campground near Sturgis, S.D., ending an Amber Alert that started Monday.
In an email Thursday, the Saskatchewan RCMP said the matter of how Moore, his partner, and the children travelled to the United States was still being investigated.
The RCMP said the allegations against Moore in Canada and the events leading up to his departure from Canada with his wife and the kids are being probed by its General Investigation Section with support from the Major Crimes Unit.
During a media conference Tuesday, the RCMP said a warrant had been issued for Moore’s arrest on a charge of failing to report information to the Registration Centre within seven days after a change of address. Those reports are required under the Sex Offender Registry Act.
As of Thursday, no new charges had been laid against Moore, though the RCMP said the investigation is continuing.
According to an online list of inmates in the Pennington County (S.D.) jail, Moore and his partner are on federal hold for immigration and customs enforcement.
The Amber Alert was issued Monday on behalf of the Shaunavon RCMP, as it looked for a seven-year-old girl and an eight-year-old boy who had disappeared from Eastend.
The alert was issued after the Ministry of Social Services got an apprehension order for the kids. That order was sought after a well-being check at the family home in Eastend found the residence vacant.
The kids were believed to be travelling with their mother and with Moore, whose criminal history includes convictions for sexual interference of a minor and possession of child pornography.
Having reason to believe the group had gone to South Dakota, the RCMP extended the Amber Alert to that state Tuesday night.
According to the Rapid City Journal, the Meade County sheriff’s office and other law enforcement agents searched the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally campgrounds after receiving the alert.
The vehicle described in the alert was found at the Glencoe Camp Resort, and Moore and his common-law partner were detained shortly before midnight.
A representative of the Glencoe campground declined to comment when contacted by 650 CKOM on Thursday, but the campground did issue a post on Facebook congratulating its security staff for helping in the investigation.
Richard Fortunato, the acting chief patrol agent for U.S. Customs and Border Protection, said in the release on the agency’s website the family was found in part because of strong relationships between police agencies.
“This is a perfect example of bringing criminals to justice through a whole-of-government approach and working with our international law enforcement partners,” Fortunato said.
— With files from 650 CKOM’s Libby Giesbrecht