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Child Exploitation

Father, son arrested on child pornography charges

BRATTLEBORO, Vt. — Two Vermont men were arrested late Tuesday by special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) for allegedly possessing child pornography.

HSI special agents and officers with the Brattleboro Police Department executed a federal search warrant Tuesday at the residence of David Schnyer, 77, and Ralph Schnyer, 36, a father and son. An initial examination of computers in the home revealed videos and images of suspected child pornography.

Both men made initial appearances in federal court Wednesday and were subsequently released on their own recognizance with court-ordered conditions.

The charges and allegations are merely accusations, and the defendants are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.

This investigation is part of Operation Predator, a nationwide HSI initiative to protect children from sexual predators, including those who travel overseas for sex with minors, Internet child pornographers, criminal alien sex offenders and child sex traffickers. HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423 or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators.

Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-843-5678.

HSI is a founding member and current chair of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.