SAN FRANCISCO, CA—The FBI, working with its state and local partners during two weeks in August, identified and located 84 minor victims of child sex trafficking and child sexual exploitation offenses and located 37 actively missing children during a nationwide enforcement campaign, dubbed “Operation Cross Country.” The FBI-led nationwide initiative focused on identifying and locating victims of sex trafficking and investigating and arresting individuals and criminal enterprises involved in both child sex trafficking and human trafficking.
In addition to the identification and location of adolescent victims, the FBI and its partners located 141 adult victims of human trafficking. Agents and investigators also identified or arrested 85 suspects with child sexual exploitation and human trafficking offenses. Those suspects identified will be subject to additional investigation for potential charges. The average age of victims located during this year’s Operation Cross Country was 15.5, while the youngest victim discovered was 11 years old.
Locally, FBI agents from the San Francisco Division worked with federal, state, and local law enforcement partners and located three adult victims, arrested three suspects, and recovered three firearms during operations that ran from August 4-7, as well as August 11-14. The FBI’s Victim Specialists were on hand for the operations conducted during this time and offered services to the recovered victims.
The following agencies participated in operations with the FBI San Francisco Field Office: San Jose Police Department, Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office, Santa Clara Police Department, Oakland Police Department, South San Francisco Police Department, San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office, San Bruno Police Department, Milpitas Police Department, U.S. Probation Office, United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California, Homeland Security Investigations, Northern California Regional Intelligence Center, Diplomatic Security Service.
“This operation not only resulted in the successful recovery of victims but in the arrests of suspected traffickers and the removal of guns off our Bay Area streets, making our community safer, “ said FBI Special Agent in Charge Sean Ragan. “I want to thank our law enforcement partners for their collaboration on this effort and for their continuous dedication to protecting victims and combatting sex trafficking across our region.”
“Human trafficking is among the most heinous crimes the FBI encounters,” said FBI Director Christopher Wray. “Unfortunately, such crimes—against both adults and children—are far more common than most people realize. As we did in this operation, the FBI and our partners will continue to find and arrest traffickers, identify and help victims, and raise awareness of the exploitation of our most vulnerable populations.”
As part of Operation Cross Country XII, FBI special agents, intelligence analysts, victim specialists, and child adolescent forensic Interviewers working in conjunction with over 200 state, local, and federal partners and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) conducted 391 operations over the two-week period.
Victim specialists provide a “bridge” for victims who are wary of the system, help the victim establish positive relationships with law enforcement, and ensure the human trafficking victim population receives any appropriate resources available to them. Victim specialists also provide services based on the individual needs of human trafficking victims, to include crisis intervention, emergency food and clothing, transportation to receive emergency services, and locating shelter or housing. The task forces in the recent operation included federal, state, local and tribal partners, with efforts in every state and even a few U.S. territories.
Trafficked for who? Them Dems , of course.
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