DENTON (CBSDFW.COM) – A Joint Online Solicitation Operation led to the arrests of 13 men who the Denton County Sheriff said agreed to meet a minor for sex.
The Denton County Sheriff’s Office said it conducted the operation on Wednesday, January 23 and Thursday, January 24.
The effort consisted of undercover online chats utilizing personal advertisements, covert social media and other communication platforms to communicate with potential targets looking to have sexual intercourse with a child under 17 years old.
Eleven men went to meet a minor for sex at a local spot and were met and arrested by law enforcement. Two other men agreed to meet but did not show and were arrested after warrants were obtained.
Investigations and evidence gathering continue on seven more people.
All suspects arrested have been charged with Online Solicitation of a Minor. Some have been charged with multiple counts.
ICE has placed immigration detainers on two of the men believed to be in United States illegally.
Seven of the men arrested live in Denton County. The others live in nearby counties.
The operation was carried out by the Denton County Sheriff’s Office, Texas Department of Public Safety, Denton Police Department, Denton County District Attorney’s Office, Tarrant County Sheriff s Office, FBI, Fort Worth Police Department, Wylie Police Department, HSI, Dallas Police Department, Dallas County Sheriff’s Office and the Collin County District Attorney’s Office.
“Once again our Joint Online Solicitation Operation has resulted in huge success. We surpassed arrests and cases from our July operation. Thank you to the agencies and officers who worked so hard to make this operation work, Sheriff Tracy Murphree said in a news release Wednesday. “The success of the operation also saddens me that we continue to have these online predators looking to victimize our kids. These predators cross all lines of race, age, and social economic backgrounds. From the college administrator to the unemployed all were looking to have sex with children. Parents should
always be vigilant in monitoring their kids social media activity. We will continue to have these operations and will work extremely hard to protect our kids.”