After a large scale sting operation, authorities have busted a massive Ohio sex trafficking ring involving both a doctor and a church leader. They have arrested more than 100 people in Ohio as part of the child sex trafficking sting.
More than 30 law enforcement agencies, led by Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, collaborated to arrest 104 people, which yielded 53 felony charges, according to a statement from Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost. Reportedly, the operation happened in three central Ohio counties: Franklin, Fairfield, and Delaware.
WBNS-TV reported that among those charged were a medical doctor and a church youth director.
The operation was known as Fourth and Goal. The law enforcement officers pretended as children online and talked with men. According to Major Steven Tucker of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, of the total number of men the officers communicated with, 24 showed up to try to meet people they thought were children.
“They show up with things that somebody is not going to show up to a house with unless they intended to engage in sexual activity,” Tucker was quoted as saying.
According to the official statement, each of the 24 men has been charged with importuning and attempted unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.
In addition to internet predators, the operation also targeted human traffickers. Thirty-six men were arrested on solicitation charges and one man was arrested on suspicion of promoting prostitution. 43 women were also arrested on suspicion of selling sex.
Tucker pleaded to the viewers, “Please talk to your children. Please know what they are doing online. Set the rules. Be the parent. Know who they are talking to. You are entitled to ask. You are entitled to know. The children need to know, you can not trust everybody. Not every adult is trustworthy.”