LANSING | About a half dozen Lansing police officers were involved in the recent nationwide operation targeting commercial child sex trafficking.
Lansing Police Chief Dennis Murrin said local hotels were used as part of the operation that was coordinated with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. One underage girl from Chicago was recovered locally during the operation and returned to her family.
Two other women, Jessica Wilson, 18, Calumet Park, Ill., and Darazi A. Williams, 19, of Green Bay, Wis. were arrested on prostitution charges, according to Murrin. A third suspect from Dolton was still being processed Tuesday morning, he said.
Operation Cross Country VIII was a weeklong enforcement action to address commercial child sex trafficking throughout the United States. The operation that included the FBI, along with local, state and federal law enforcement officers, resulted in 168 recoveries of children who were being victimized by prostitution. Additionally, 281 pimps were arrested on state and federal charges.
To date, the FBI and its task force partners such as the Lansing and Calumet Park police departments have recovered nearly 3,600 children from the streets. The investigations and subsequent 1,450 convictions have resulted in some lengthy sentences, including 14 life terms and the seizure of more than $3.1 million in assets.