Massive internet crimes sting

Crime

Kansas agencies take part and make arrests

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Department of Justice did a massive sweep to find and arrest internet predators.

Sgt. Jeff Swanson with the local Internet Crimes Against Children task force helped, and there were arrests in Kansas.

“The main focus is to identify and arrest sexual predators who use and distribute child porn, and they attempt to ID new victims,” said Sgt. Swanson. “And we’ve done just that.

Swanson has been on the streets of Wichita as a beat cop. He’s been overseas to bring war criminals to justice. And he’s worked with the FBI. But, he says, his most challenging role has been leading detectives to arrest predators.

“Keeping our kids safe just can not be something we leave to someone else,” said Swanson.

The DOJ offered a grant to make the sting operation happen from April through May of this year. Kansas ICAC sting teams arrested six, recovered two human trafficking victims and served 33 search warrants.

While their work continues, Swanson says it’s up to parents to help.

“We give our kids devices now that have more computing power than the computers used to land on the moon,” said Sgt. Swanson. “And we are giving our kids those devices and just turning them loose?”

And Swanson says your child, regardless their age, is on Instagram, Facebook messenger and dozens of other apps.

And you need to get to know those apps.

“How many accounts do your kids have and what are the names those are under?” asks Sgt. Swanson. “Look at the applications. And then do the research. Download the application themselves. Create an account and see what the account does. Figure it out.”

ICAC of Wichita says there may be more arrests from the recent sting. Their work continues.

“Since 2009 in Kansas, we have recovered 243 victims of human trafficking,” said Sgt. Swanson. “So, yes, our work will continue. Kids just don’t think like predators. They are out there.”

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