Joint FBI, Texas DPS, and El Paso County Constable’s Office Announce the Results of Operation Cerberus
On July 23, 2020, the Federal Bureau of Investigation El Paso Division, Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigations Division, and El Paso County Constable’s Office Precincts One and Six are announcing the conclusion of Operation Cerberus, a sexual coercion and enticement of a minor operation that occurred from July 17th to 19th, 2020.
More than 60 investigative personnel conducted undercover operations, executed search warrants, and arrested suspects. This collaborative operation resulted in the arrest of 10 individuals, who are charged with offenses ranging from promotion of prostitution to attempted coercion and enticement of a minor. The operation resulted in five federal arrests, four state arrests, one state arrest/outstanding warrant, and two investigative detentions.
Five men have been charged federally with attempted enticement of a minor to engage in sexual activity. The defendants include: 29-year-old Ricardo Ortiz, 21-yea-old Steven Orozco, 49-year-old Cayetano Lopez, 36-year-old Anthony Tew, and 22-year-old Alfredo Ramos were arrested separately for attempting to entice a minor to engage in sexual activity.
Thirty-three-year-old, Michael Martinez, was arrested on an outstanding warrant with the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office after he was detained for attempting to entice a minor to engage in sexual activity.
Four individuals have been charged with state charges on promoting prostitution and engaging in criminal enterprise/prostitution. The defendants include: 34-year-old Junior Soto, 34-year-old Erika Casas, 36-year-old Valeria Rodriguez, and 33-year-old Sarah Morales.
“The FBI will always be vigilant in pursuing those who choose to prey on our most vulnerable citizens, our children,” said Luis M. Quesada, special agent in charge of the FBI El Paso Division. “I would like to thank our law enforcement partners and their task force officers as part of the FBI’s El Paso Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking task force for their commitment to making these arrests.”
Operation Cerberus’s task force was compromised of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Violent Crimes Against Children Squad, Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigations Division, El Paso County Constable’s Office Precinct One, El Paso County Constable’s Office Precinct Six, and the United States Attorney’s Office – Western District of Texas.
Operation Cerberus is an example of the dedication and commitment by local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies working together to protect our children in West Texas. This combined effort sends a clear message that predators will be brought to justice.
It is important to note that a criminal complaint is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.