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19 arrested in statewide operation seeking online predators | #childpredator | #onlinepredator | #sextrafficing

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SALT LAKE CITY — Nineteen people were arrested statewide during a recent four day undercover operation by Utah law enforcers looking for online predators.

The Utah Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force announced Tuesday that from Aug. 16-19, more than 70 officers from federal, state and local agencies participated in “Operation Siege” in northern and southern Utah.

Agents would typically pose as underage children online and engage in conversations with people who wanted to meet children for the purpose of sexually abusing them. Search warrants were then served on the homes of the people arrested where agents would look for child pornography.

As of Wednesday, 19 people had been arrested for investigation of charges including enticing a minor, sexual exploitation of a minor, dealing in harmful materials to a minor, human trafficking of a child and “sextortion,” the Utah Attorney General’s Office said in a prepared statement.

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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the KSL.com team in 2021, after many years of reporting at the Deseret News and KSL NewsRadio before that.

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