(RoyalPatriot.com )- Operation Reclaim and Rebuild was undertaken between January 22 and January 28 across nine counties, including Los Angeles, Orange, and San Bernardino. The sting operation was to capture traffickers, many of who prey on children.
In the week-long statewide multi-agency task force, authorities made 368 arrests and freed 131 victims of human trafficking, according to a statement released on February 1.
The victims’ ages varied from 13 to 52, with six being youngsters. The average age was in the mid-20s.
Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Chief Michel Moore said, “This beautiful nation has an unsightly scar that is all too often visible.”
The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office were among the federal, state, and local law enforcement organizations participating in the sting operation.
To assist the victims “to escape from this life-threatening environment,” the investigators collaborated with victim advocacy organizations to provide services and resources.
Investigators visited massage parlors that they suspected of being engaged in trafficking after responding to many adverts for illicit services. According to Moore, those arrested included panderers and pimps, as well as those who had used their services.
According to Moore, some victims are abducted and cut off from all support to become reliant on the trafficker, while others are coerced or threatened with harm to their families.
Moore said that whereas “in the old days,” law enforcement often saw victims of human traffickers as criminals, a more contemporary viewpoint is to perceive them as having been used by criminals—many of whom abducted and kept against their will.
Since some of these victims have been beaten, pursued, and pistol-whipped, leaped out of moving cars to escape, gone missing, or died. Moore said that the human-trafficking trade is a violent business.
The best predators are traffickers. They’re looking for helpless people and children, Moore said.