Politics Magazine

Sheriff’s Bust 3 ‘Johns’ in Santa Clarita Sex Web Sting

Posted on the 03 August 2015 by Jim Winburn @civicbeebuzz

SANTA CLARITA – Three men responded to Internet sex ads last Thursday only to find themselves in hot water with undercover deputies at a local hotel room in unincorporated Santa Clarita, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Information Bureau reported.

The men, who were not from the Santa Clarita area, were arrested for misdemeanor charges of solicitation, authorities said. The arrests were part of an Internet “sex buyer” sting conducted by Sheriff’s officials as an ongoing campaign to stop human trafficking.

Thursday’s sting in the 25200 block of The Old Road in unincorporated Santa Clarita specifically targeted suspects “attempting to buy sex after answering Internet advertisements,” according to investigators from the Sheriff’s Human Exploitation and Trafficking Team, who worked in conjunction with deputies from the Santa Clarita Station.

“Detectives scoured the Internet advertisements in the area in an effort to identify and rescue any juveniles who may be victims of human trafficking; however, no juveniles were located,” authorities stated in their report.

Sheriff’s officials said the department’s Human Exploitation and Trafficking Team is committed to putting an end to sex slavery by attacking “both the supply and demand aspects” of this global enterprise.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has set aside nearly $7 million to address child sex trafficking as part of the 2015-2016 budget, according to an April 2015 statement by Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who said the funds are expected to be used for sex trafficking prevention initiatives, programs and services including the creation of a specialized court for trafficked children in the foster care system.

Supervisor Ridley-Thomas stated a large percentage of children that have been trafficked have also been in the child welfare system. Among young girls who have been trafficked and arrested, nearly 80 percent had prior contact with the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services, according to the the supervisor’s office.

To help prevent crimes of exploitation, contact your local Sheriff’s Station. Tipsters may remain anonymous by calling LA Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477), or by texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637). Online crime reporting is also available at LACrimeStoppers.org.

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