21 arrested in human trafficking rescue operation in Utah County

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UTAH COUNTY, Utah — A multi-agency operation led to the arrest of 21 individuals on human trafficking and drug-related expenses in Utah County final month.

Three individuals have been rescued throughout the operation, together with two ladies and an 18-year-old man who had immigrated to the U.S. from Ecuador.

“He had met some folks that he thought have been to assist him to get him settled, to assist him with a spot to remain till he discovered a job and people have been the folks that ended up trafficking him,” stated Sgt. Elyse Hines, Utah County Sheriff’s Office Special Victims Unit.

Among the individuals arrested, some have been males touring to fulfill youngsters for intercourse, together with one suspect who had possession ropes, intercourse toys and lingerie in his possession when taken into custody.

Lt. Jason Randall, with the Utah County Sheriff’s Office Investigations bureau says a kind of suspects got here from Wyoming to Utah to fulfill up with a 13-year-old lady. Lt. Randall says he had ropes, intercourse toys and lingerie in his possession when taken into custody.

“There’s little question in my thoughts that we have now saved a number of different baby victims as a result of this, this man is a perpetrator and he confirmed up with the intent of doing hurt to a 13-year-old lady,” stated Lt. Randall.

According to numbers from the National Human Trafficking Hotline, Utah has had 1,413 contacts since 2007.  This contains cellphone calls, texts and even e-mails obtained by the NHTH that reference the state of Utah.

Of these greater than 1,400 contacts, there have been 401 instances of human trafficking, as of newest numbers offered by NHTH on the finish of 2020.

In 2020, in accordance with the NHTH web site, there have been 64 reported instances of human trafficking.  42 of these have been intercourse trafficking instances.

While Lt. Randall says this was an extremely profitable operation, he says this is not the tip of the iceberg.

“One of the explanations we needed to do that is to let these victims know that there are solutions, there are answers,” stated Lt. Randall.

Following the arrests, a forensic examination of cell telephones taken as proof recognized different potential victims and traffickers, together with a witness at present cooperating in one other human trafficking case being investigated by Unified (*21*) Department.

Ten businesses, together with the Utah County Sheriff’s Office, Homeland Security and police departments in quite a few cities participated in the operation that ran from Feb. 14-17.

Lt. Randall says they’ve 4 extra operations, like this one, deliberate by means of the top of the 12 months.

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