FBI Task Forces in Fairfield, Fresno, and Sacramento Successfully Recover Nine Juveniles, Arrest Seven Alleged Pimps
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), in conjunction with its local, state, and federal law enforcement task force partners, conducted Operation Cross Country VIII last week to address commercial child sex trafficking throughout the United States. The Sacramento Division of the FBI participated in this operation and conducted operations with its state and local law enforcement partners primarily in Fresno, Sacramento, and Solano County.
“We sincerely thank our partners in Fairfield, Fresno, and Sacramento for their participation in Operation Cross Country VIII and their continued commitment to the difficult task of identifying, locating, and recovering children who have been exploited and ensuring that their traffickers face justice,” said Special Agent in Charge Monica M. Miller of the Sacramento Feld Office of the FBI. “While the arrest of the offender has an immediate result, the only way to possibly stop the cycle of victimization is to get the minor to a safe location away from the offender so that he or she can begin to accept services necessary to begin the healing process and restore a sense of normalcy.”
Locally, nine minors were recovered who were being victimized through prostitution. Seven individuals were arrested suspected of trafficking the juveniles. The results of the effort in the FBI’s Sacramento division are as follows:
- Fresno County
- Five minors recovered; one alleged pimp arrested
- Sacramento County
- Three minors recovered; two alleged pimps arrested
- Solano County
- One minor recovered; four alleged pimps arrested.
The FBI thanks the its local, state, and federal law enforcement partners representing nearly 400 separate agencies who participated in Operation Cross Country VIII and their ongoing enforcement efforts nationwide. During Operation Cross Country VIII in Fresno County, Sacramento County, and Solano County, the following state and local law enforcement agencies provided vital resources to aid the Sacramento division of the FBI in its efforts to identify, locate, and recover victims of child sex trafficking and identify and arrest their traffickers:
- Fairfield Police Department
- Fresno Police Department
- Sacramento Police Department
- Suisun Police Department
- Vacaville Police Department
- West Sacramento Police Department
- Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department
- Solano County Sheriff’s Office
- Fresno County District Attorney’s Office
- Solano County District Attorney’s Office
- California Highway Patrol
- Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
Operation Cross Country is part of the Innocence Lost National Initiative established in 2003 by the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division, in partnership with the Department of Justice and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), to address the growing problem of child prostitution.
To date, the FBI and its task force partners have recovered more than 3,400 children from being trafficked. The investigations and subsequent 1,450 convictions have resulted in lengthy sentences, including 14 life terms.
In 2013, the Sacramento Division of the FBI and its task force partners recovered 60 minors and opened 27 cases to investigate men and women who trafficked juveniles. This year, 32 children have been recovered and 26 cases have been opened to date in the Sacramento FBI’s area of responsibility.
Task force operations usually begin as local enforcement actions that target truck stops, casinos, street “tracks,” and websites that advertise dating or escort services, based on intelligence gathered by officers working in their respective jurisdictions. Initial arrests are often violations of local and state laws relating to prostitution or solicitation. Information gleaned from those arrested frequently uncovers organized efforts to prostitute women and children across many states. FBI agents together with their task force partners develop and investigate these violations. Once a case is ready for prosecution it is then presented to the U.S. Attorney’s Offices and/or District Attorneys Offices. It is through this collaboration that those who commercially exploit children can be brought to justice.
The Innocence Lost National Initiative brings state and federal law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and social service providers from across the country to NCMEC for training.