The RCMP’s Alberta-based national security unit has charged a Parkland County man who was espousing “extremist” messages on the Internet with a slew of offences, including possessing guns, explosives and police gear.
In a news release Thursday, police said 26-year-old Kelvin Benjamin Maure was part of a group of associated individuals and “displayed escalating behaviour leading investigators to believe he presented a threat to critical infrastructure, police, and the public.” He was arrested earlier this year in February.
“An ever-increasing concern and challenge faced by law enforcement is the use of the internet and social media as a platform to inspire, radicalize or espouse extremist messaging or calls for violence,” said Inspector Scott Isaac, head of the RCMP’s Alberta-based Integrated National Security Enforcement Team.
“As experienced in this recent investigation, the accused was interacting online with like-minded individuals in posting extreme views that ultimately escalated towards him engaging in criminal activity that posed a considerable risk to public and police safety, ultimately resulting in his arrest.”
“As the investigation continues, we are attempting to determine whether the accused’s actions were motivated by a specific ideology or if there were broader intentions to his activities.”
Police arrested Maure during a high-profile operation in Parkland County’s Heatherlea Estates area, near Spruce Grove. They said the arrest took place after he made “several online posts with comments and photographs deemed to be a threat.”
After his arrest RCMP searched several properties and seized “numerous” firearms and other paraphernalia.
He now faces 34 criminal charges including:
- Seven counts of possession of a prohibited firearm or weapon
- Five counts possession of a prohibited firearm in a motor vehicle
- Five counts possession of a prohibited firearm or weapon knowing he was not the holder of a license or registration certificate
- Three counts possession of a loaded prohibited firearm or with readily accessible ammunition
- Three counts making or possessing an explosive substance
- Two counts personation of a peace officer contrary
- Three counts careless storage of a firearm
- Two counts possession of a prohibited firearm without holding a license
- One count carrying a concealed firearm
- One count importing a prohibited device
- One count break and enter
- One count of mischief
Maure remains in custody. His next court appearance is May 7 in Stony Plain.
More to come.