RENO, NV - Reno police arrested 30 people on solicitation charges Friday and Saturday as part of a sting using federal money.
June 20 and June 21, 2014, detectives from the Regional Street Enforcement Team (SET) participated in a Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) nationwide initiative designed to recover juvenile victims of commercial sexual exploitation/sex trafficking and identify/arrest those who are responsible for their exploitation. The SET team and the FBI have been partners in the Reno Innocence Lost Task Force since 2006; it's a program designed to recover local juvenile victims of commercial sexual exploitation.
In addition to SET and the FBI, attorneys and investigators from the Nevada Attorney General’s office, enforcement agents from the Nevada Gaming Control Board and attorneys from the United States Attorney’s Office participated with this initiative.
The two-day operation focused on the 4th Street corridor in downtown Reno and people conducting sex trafficking/sexual exploitation using internet websites to arrange prostitution transactions.
Undercover detectives also utilized rooms in a downtown Reno hotel for this operation.
June 20, a 17-year-old Reno girl was found by police, who say her recovery resulted from an operation targeting an internet website posting for prostitution. The teen was provided resources by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s victim advocate, who also participated and was on scene during the operation.
An additional 30 adults, ages ranging from 18 to 51, were arrested for solicitation for prostitution. Each of those 30 adults were met with, and provided resources (to include clothing, food, and referrals) by the FBI’s victim advocate and an advocate from Awaken Inc, a local faith-based nonprofit group that has also partnered with the Reno Police Department.
Police say it is the goal of the participating agencies to provide those contacted with resources and avenues to escape the world of sexual exploitation, and therefore, they are not releasing the names of those arrested or cited.
The Regional Street Enforcement team is comprised of detectives from the Reno Police Department, Sparks Police Department, Washoe County Sheriff’s Office, and the University of Nevada Police Department.