US Authorities Arrest 108 in Operation Targeting Human Trafficking
U.S. authorities in Florida said they arrested 108 suspects, including four employees at Disney, a former judge, and several child predators, during a week-long operation targeting human and sex trafficking.
Undercover detectives communicated online with the suspects and arranged for a meetup at a location where they were arrested after their arrival, a statement by the Polk County Sheriff's Office said.
“The arrests of a human trafficker and four child predators alone makes this whole operation worthwhile,” said Sheriff Grady Judd. “The online prostitution industry enables traffickers and victimizes those who are being trafficked.”
Among others, Operation March Sadness II netted a 32-year old woman from Orlando while she was trafficking another woman in prostitution as well as a 27-year-old lifeguard at the Polynesian Resort at Disney who allegedly tried to solicit sexual favours from a 14-year-old online. The minor was actually an undercover detective. The three other Disney employees were arrested for solliciting prostitution.
A retired judge and Special Assistant for Legal Affairs at the Cook County Sheriff’s Office in Illinois, Daniel Peters, 66, was caught trying to sollicit prostitution.
“That’s right,” said Sheriff Judd at a press conference “he said he was a Special Assistant in Legal Affairs and worked in the Office of Professional Regulations, where he was a director.”
“What amazes me is we could do another operation starting next week and fill this board up again,” said Sheriff Judd. “We’ll be back and if you violate the law, we’re going to take you to jail. That’s a guarantee.”