LONG BEACH (CBSLA.com) — Police say they have made 91 arrests for pimping, prostitution and payment for sexual services following an eight-month sex trafficking investigation.
Of those arrests, 20 were for human trafficking and 10 were for internet crimes against children, Long Beach police Chief Jim McDonnell said.
The investigation, which began in February, rescued 22 minors between 12 and 17, with 54 women referred to victim resources and support services, McDonnell said.
Some of those minors were runaways from as far away as New York, Michigan, Arizona and Nevada, McDonnell said and many of them have been reunited with their families.
The Human Sex Trafficking Task Force also included members of the Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, the Department of Homeland Security and local volunteer welfare agencies.
The focus of the task force was rescue, as much as prosecution, Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said.
“There are few things more disturbing than the buying and selling of children for sex,” Ridley-Thomas said. “We do not refer to them as prostitutes. They are victims.”
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