Cuyahoga County

Takeaways from FBI news conference on combating child sex trafficking

6/24/2014
CLEVELAND, Ohio — The FBI rescued 11 teenage girls being trafficked for sex in the Cleveland area and 16 in northern Ohio during a weeklong investigation into the various sex trafficking rings in the area, officials said.

FBI Assistant Special Agent In-Charge Todd Wickerham said Monday that Cleveland's part of Operation Country Wide — a concentrated weeklong effort across the U.S. to combat human trafficking — was the second most successful in the country. Agents in Denver rescued 18 girls being sold for sex.

"If anyone is a pimp or a prostitute... this is a very bad time to do so," said Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty. "Our ability to arrest and put you away has been enhanced with new laws."

Wickerham said he expects both county and federal charges for the cases. Some of the cases are still being presented to grand juries at both levels, while others have already been charged in local courts.

Read the entire article and see video of Prosecutor McGinty at Cleveland.com.