Teacher, nurse among 123 apprehended in Hillsborough County human trafficking investigation that rescued 28: HCSO

More than 120 persons have been arrested and 28 victims have been saved as a result of a 90-day human trafficking operation in Hillsborough County, according to the sheriff’s office.

Under the banner of Operation Renewed Hope, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office’s Human Trafficking Squad has conducted a number of investigations during the last 90 days.

Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister stated that detectives conducted a number of undercover streetwalker and hotel/motel investigations, as well as online discussions in which undercover investigators posed as children seeking sex. They also pretended to be guardians and sold youngsters for sex, according to the sheriff.

Sheriff Chronister stated that he chose the holidays to execute the operation because youngsters are not in school and are more likely to be online.

“I wanted to ensure that our children would be protected and those wanting to pay for sex and wanting to fuel the sex trade were not getting a free pass because of the holidays,” the sheriff stated.

Sheriff Chronister also stated that deputies detained 123 persons on human trafficking or trafficking-related charges.

According to the sheriff, those arrested included a teacher, nurse, basketball coach, and a member of a spiritual organization.

“These are individuals who have betrayed our trust,” Sheriff Chronister explained.

According to the sheriff, Operation Renewed Hope also targeted the motivating force behind prostitution. The sheriff encourages anyone who suspected human trafficking to report it.

“These suspects are aware that what they are doing is wrong. “We’re seeing a trend where they drop their cell phones, take their cell phones somewhere else before they show up to have sex with this young child because they don’t want their wife to be able to track where they are,” Sheriff Chronister explained. “They know what they are doing is wrong.”

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