The multi-organizational Operation Lost Souls rescued children between the ages of 10 and 17, many of whom were victims of sexual and physical abuse
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About 70 missing children were found after a major anti-trafficking operation.
The people found ranged in age from 10 to 17 and included victims of sex trafficking and physical and sexual abuse, authorities said.
A large number of the children were discovered in west Texas, while others were found in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Many of them were outliers.
The multi-agency operation, dubbed Operation Lost Souls, was announced by The Homeland Security Investigations (HSI)which is under the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency and lasted three weeks between late April and mid-May.
The operation was focused in El Paso, Midland, Ector and Tom Green counties in Texas, but children were also found in Colorado and in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.
In a statement, Taekuk Cho, Deputy El Paso Special Agent at HSI, warned that those who have harassed and trafficked young people “will be held responsible for these heinous crimes.”
“Operation Lost Souls is an example of Homeland Security Investigations’ commitment to protecting the public from crime victimization,” he said. “In this case, we’re taking care of our children — our community’s most precious resource.”
Special Agent Cho added, “HSI is committed to continuing to work with our law enforcement partners to locate, recover and heal missing children while ensuring the perpetrators of these heinous crimes are held accountable and brought to justice.”
Agencies involved in the operation included local police departments, school districts and public safety bureaus. Law enforcement officials said the relevant authorities offered services and counseling to the victims and their families.
No arrests have been publicly announced so far, but the investigation is set to continue following the discovery of “additional information and leads” as a result of the operation, HSI said.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/us-news/seventy-missing-children-aged-between-27117823 70 missing children between the ages of 10 and 17 found in "Lost Souls" operation