Sheboygan Co. sheriff: 5 arrested in undercover human trafficking operation

SHEBOYGAN COUNTY, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Five people were arrested Thursday, Oct. 1, during an undercover human trafficking operation in Sheboygan County. 

The Sheboygan County Sheriff’s Office conducted the investigation, while working closely with DCI (WI Division of Criminal Investigations), Plymouth Police Department, Sheboygan Police Department, Wisconsin State Patrol, and the Sheboygan County District Attorney’s Office.

During the course of this operation, five individuals were arrested for a variety of charges. The charges filed as a result were:

  • 944.30(1m)(a) – Prostitution – Soliciting
  • 2 counts – 944.31 – Patronizing Prostitutes
  • 2 counts – 948.12(1m) – Possession of Child Pornography
  • 944.30(1m)(a) – Prostitution
  • 946.41(1) – Resisting or Obstructing an Officer
  • 961.41(3g)(c) – Possession of Cocaine
  • 943.23(1g) – Operate vehicle without owner’s consent

Authorities say the individuals were identified by investigators using popular online websites specifically generated for the purpose of connecting individuals for the purpose of arranging sexual encounters in exchange for money.

"We conduct operations such as this to attempt to combat human sex trafficking in and around our community," the Sheboygan County Sheriff's Office said in a news release. "During these operations we connect community resources to the prostitutes who are at higher risk of human trafficking, domestic violence, physical assaults, among many other life changing and degrading outcomes."

The Sheboygan County Sheriff's Office went on to say, "Human Sex Trafficking at any level will not be tolerated by our law enforcement agencies in Sheboygan County."

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