58 Suspects Arrested in Child Sex Sting During Final Four Basketball Tournament
Dozens of people were arrested last weekend in Minnesota in connection with a child sex-sting operation. The undercover operation took place during the Final Four basketball tournament, reported Reuters.
Minnesota undercover agents posed as children or sex buyers on social media. Authorities arrested the suspects at an arranged meeting place. Fifty-eight suspects were taken into custody. Authorities also rescued 30 victims from “trafficking situations.” One was a minor.
Multiple Sex-Trafficking Rings
Jill Oliveira is a spokesperson for the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension with the Department of Public Safety. According to Oliveira, the suspects represented multiple sex-trafficking rings. “These were separate instances where they either responded to undercover officers posing as sex buyers or undercover officers posing as minors.”
The operation happened during the NCAA’s Final Four basketball tournament in Minneapolis. Of the 58 suspects arrested, 47 will face felony charges. The charges will be solicitation of a minor or solicitation of prostitution with someone under the age of 16. The remaining 11 were charged with probable cause of sex trafficking and promotion of prostitution.
Drew Evans serves as the superintendent of the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. “This operation is an example of the aggressive steps necessary to stop traffickers and johns who buy and sell people for sex in our communities,” he said.
Over 30 local and state agencies were involved in the sting. Stings like this are fairly routine and are conducted around big sporting events. Just before the Super Bowl in Atlanta earlier this year, authorities arrested 169 in a similar sex-trafficking sting operation.
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