As a coordinated nationwide vice sting aimed at rounding up sex workers and their customers, there's no denying the results.
Other clips follow officers tailing people in tight dresses and stiletto heels or scouring printouts of escort ads from hotel beds.
Shot after shot show authorities handcuffing young people, mostly women and girls, and parading them down dim hallways, thick gloved hands gripping skinny arms on either side, or pushing them up against cop cars, the camera lingering on cuffed wrists clasped tightly over baggy jeans or long, bare legs. According to the FBI, it involved the efforts of 74 federally led Human Trafficking Task Forces, comprised of officers from 55 FBI field offices and more than 400 federal, state, and local law-enforcement agencies.
Two others were brought up on federal charges for sex trafficking of children, though both were cases of what might be called , with no force, fraud, or coercion alleged by any parties.
In one, a Kansas man is accused of earning "at least $100" for driving a 17-year-old girl to three prostitution appointments, which she arranged.
Altogether, these numbers suggest a strikingly lackluster outcome for a federal crusade to save children from "modern slavery" (as so many in the Justice Department routinely call it) and to bring their perpetrators to justice, particularly when you consider the manpower and money mobilized, the breadth of the effort, and the supposed magnitude of the underage sex trafficking problem.
Viewed from another perspective, however, the latest Operation Cross Country was a blockbuster success.A middle-aged man is making arrangements to pay a young woman for sex.Once she agrees, the squad will rush in, shouting instructions, their bulletproof vests bulging with firearms and emblazoned with police or FBI. —will have her hands tied behind her back and her phone confiscated.Oregon authorities conducted operations in Portland, Eugene, and Salem, where they made a big deal about raiding a strip club under suspicion of harboring underage prostitution.No juveniles were identified and no one was arrested from the raid.The latest iteration of the initiative—Operation Cross Country X—took place across 103 U. These included city and suburban police departments, county sheriff's offices, state police and investigative bureaus, juvenile detention departments, drug enforcement units, and an impressive array of federal entities: Homeland Security Investigations, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the U. Marshals Service, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Customs and Border Protection, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the Coast Guard Investigative Service, the State Department, myriad U. Attorney's Offices, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.