At least 19 men arrested in child sex sting in Whatcom County

first_imgAt least 19 men in Whatcom and Skagit counties were caught in a sting operation this month that targeted internet predators attempting to solicit sexual contact with minors, Washington State Patrol said.As of 5:30 p.m. Sunday, 19 men had been arrested in operation “Net Nanny,” which is put on by the Washington State Patrol’s Missing and Exploited Children Task Force. More arrests were expected to happen late Sunday night, the State Patrol said.This is the 10th sting the State Patrol has conducted. A similar operation in the Tri-Cities last summer resulted in 26 arrests.“The internet has become a hunting ground for sexual predators that are targeting our vulnerable children,” WSP Chief John R. Batiste said after a Net Nanny operation last month in Kitsap County. “This multiagency operation is taking dangerous individuals off the streets and making communities safer for families.”Most of the men were arrested on suspicion of attempted child rape and attempted communication with a minor for immoral purposes. Many of them had little to no criminal history.A Whatcom County Superior Court commissioner found probable cause Friday to charge the first seven men arrested; the rest are expected to appear in court Monday afternoon. Formal criminal charges for all the men must be filed by the middle of the week.last_img read more