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Thirteen men, including one Disney and one Publix Super Markets employee, have been arrested in Florida for allegedly wanting to”sexually abuse” and “groom” children.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd detailed “Operation Cyber Guardian II” during a news conference Thursday.
The suspects are accused of communicating with and soliciting who they thought were children online.
Eight suspects, according to reports, showed up at an undercover location in Polk County at separate times to meet who they thought were children in order to sexually batter them.
Detectives obtained warrants for five other suspects who were arrested and booked into jails in their respective counties.
Three of the suspects reportedly believed they were speaking with a parent or guardian of a child who wanted to teach their “child” to have sex or arranged for the minor to have sex with the suspect.
The 13 men face a total of 41 felonies and three misdemeanor charges, which include traveling to meet a minor for sex, attempted lewd battery, use of a computer to seduce a child, unlawful use of a two-way communication device and transmission of material harmful to a child.
Of the suspects who had warrants, all of them are accused of sending sexually explicit images or videos to people they thought were 13, 14, or 15-year-old girls or 14-year-old boys.
In addition to the agency’s team, Chris Hansen from “To Catch a Predator” worked alongside investigators, FOX 13 Tampa reports.