Almost 170 victims of a child sex trafficking ring were recovered during a week-long nationwide sting, that occurred in California and Georgia, the FBI announced Monday. During the crackdown, nicknamed “Operation Cross Country,” officials arrested 281 pimps in over 100 cities and charged them with state and federal charges of pimping, attempted child molestation, and prostitution.
“These are not faraway kids in faraway lands,” FBI Director James Comey said at an official press conference yesterday at FBI Headquarters. “These are our children. On our streets. Our truck stops. Our motels. These are America’s children.”
The operation recovered 168 children who had been forced into prostitution, some who had never been reported missing. The Los Angeles Times reported the children were found in the Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, and Sacramento. Over 71 Georgians were arrested in the sting, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution.