22 men indicted as part of human trafficking operation in Brentwood
BRENTWOOD, TN – At least 22 men have been indicted as part of an undercover human trafficking operation in Brentwood.
As part of the sting in early October, two female agents posed as prostitutes on Backpage.com and offered sex for purchase.
During the text message exchanges with dozens and dozens of would-be customers, the agents identified themselves as minors.
According to the TBI, within a three-day period, 22 men showed up for arranged meetings, showing intentions of purchasing sex with a child.
The men were from all different backgrounds. The suspects include a computer programmer, an automotive engineer, a chef and a construction worker.
Eleven of the 22 men who were indicted are still in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Now: @TBInvestigation presser on a human trafficking investigation in Brentwood. pic.twitter.com/FUaMJVM9wI
— Kim St. Onge (@KimWSMV) November 9, 2017
Authorities have arrested nine of the suspects in Williamson County:
NOT IN MY WORLD!!!! will not publish these names, if you wish to see them, you will find them here.
The TBI also sent undercover male agents to respond to advertisements on Backpage.com to try to find potential victims of human trafficking. Two women responded to the ads but declined to receive services from the TBI’s partner nonprofit agency.
The TBI, the Brentwood Police Department, Homeland Security and the office of 21st District Attorney General Kim Helper all assisted in the investigation.
“This is, without doubt, a demand-driven crime, involving men from all kinds of backgrounds,” said TBI Director Mark Gwyn. “We need more men to stand up and talk honestly about how we got here as a culture and what we need to do to fix it. Unless we’re willing to hold one other accountable, we will continue to see too many people victimized by this kind of crime, with no one to blame but ourselves.”
If you would like to help the victims of sex trafficking in Tennessee, visit ithastostop.com.