HCSO arrests more than 100 men in month-long sting targeting sex buyers

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HCSO arrests more than 100 men in sting targeting sex buyers (KTRK)

The Harris County Sheriff's Office announced Wednesday morning that it arrested 103 men as part of a month-long sting targeting sex buyers.

The effort was part of the 15th National Johns Suppression Initiative coordinated by the Cook County Sheriff's Office in Illinois.

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Harris County arrests more than 100 in prostitution sting

More than 30 U.S. law enforcement agencies participated.

The sheriff's office said the operation ran from Jan. 7 through Feb. 4.

Harris County led the nation in the number of arrests, which totaled at least 638 across the country.

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Harris County sex sting lands more than 100 under arrest

The operation is designed to draw attention to the sex trafficking industry and reduce the demand for purchased sex.

"Men who are out seeking to buy sex should know they are contributing to criminal human trafficking networks that victimize some of our community's most vulnerable residents," said Harris County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Edison Toquica. "I want to commend our Sheriff's Office Vice Unit for putting in the hard work to protect human trafficking victims by putting their customers in jail."

The Harris County Sheriff's Office Vice Unit conducted the undercover operation with the help of nine operators.

Weeks before the operation, a man was arrested after he repeatedly called and texted an undercover deputy in an attempt to impede the sting.

Another man who was arrested brought one gram of cocaine to meet with an undercover deputy. Authorities say he offered the cocaine to the deputy then snorted the drug himself.

Some of the suspects that were arrested also had methamphetamine, marijuana and ecstasy.
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