COLLIN COUNTY, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) — Nineteen suspects have been arrested after the Collin County Sheriff’s Office conducted an operation that targeted those who utilized the internet to prey on children and traffic child pornography.

“Operation Athena” had investigators from 12 different federal, state and local law enforcement agencies participate and arrest 19 suspects July 8 through July 12. Three suspects were charged with online solicitation, and the others charged with possession of child pornography.

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Collin County child exploitation bust “Operation Athena” arrests (Credit: Collin County Sheriff’s Office)

Investigators executed numerous search and arrest warrants during the operation and collected a large amount of electronic devices used by the suspects. The found devices will go through forensic examination and additional arrests are expected.

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Collin County Sheriff Jim Skinner said that the protection of children is one of his top priorities.

“This type of operation wouldn’t be possible without the cooperation that exists among all federal, state and local law enforcement agencies in North Texas and the investigators who work tirelessly to root out this evil,” Skinner said.

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