The FBI and Georgia law enforcement officials saved Atlanta 160 children and made dozens of arrests in a sex sting that stunned the city, reports WSBTV.
Named “Operation Safe Summer,” the FBI’s Atlanta field office and 38 law enforcement agencies teamed up to take down human traffickers in six metro counties, assistant Special Agent in Charge Matt Alcok said.
“They are crimes of special concern to the FBI and to law enforcement generally,” Alcoke said. “Because the victims are so vulnerable as children and because the offenders could be from just about any walk of life, from a gang member all the way up to someone who is highly successful and wealthy.”
Of the 160 children who were freed, some were as young as three years old. There were nearly 150 arrests, convictions or sentences, officials said.
Alcoke said agents focused on initiating this operation in the summer months, which is high time for human trafficking since children are out and about playing and kidnappers are preying.
“It’s important for those of us who are responsible for the children, the parents, the guardians, the older siblings, to not let children fall away [from] those strongly centered circles of importance,” Alcoke said.
A convicted sex offender was apprehended and arrested as well. Alcoke said Trevey Parks pimped a minor to work and trade sex for him.
“Trevey Parks is one of the worst of the worst,” Alcoke said. “He enticed a child to travel for sex with him. He was ultimately arrested in a joint effort by us and the local police.”
Department spokesman Howard Miller said most of the sexual requests were made through an online website that has now been removed.
“Backpage has been taken down. A lot these pages will pop up and be available for a few days. They’ll have the types of information and the people available on it, our agents will take a look at that and start their investigation and before they know it, the page is down,” Miller said.