A human trafficking sting called Operation United Front that encompassed twelve states netted 102 arrests and freed 59 victims that included minors, according to investigators from each of the states involved.
"The exploitation and repeated victimization of our children, our women, and our men must end," Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension Superintendent Drew Evans said in a statement, adding that "although the operation has been completed," our work is not over."
Evans vowed to continue tracking down and arresting human traffickers.
"We know that human trafficking transcends county and state lines, and multistate efforts like Operation United Front are essential to addressing the human trafficking crisis in our communities," Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron said Wednesday. "Every arrest made leads to one less trafficker on our streets and sends a message that we will not allow any person to exploit another through labor and sex trafficking."
Attorney's general from all 12 states, worked in conjunction with state, local, and federal law enforcement agencies to execute the operation.
In several jurisdictions, undercover officers' jobs were to observe, gain information, and arrest traffickers.
Approximately two-thirds of the victims needed medical attention. Kentucky had the highest number of arrests of the 12, a total of 46.
"Operation United Front is a great example of creating a better and safer Kentucky, one that is free of this hideous crime," Kentucky Gov Andy Beshear said in a statement on Wednesday.
Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt claimed his state's anti-human trafficking task force is a national leader in bringing traffickers to justice. Missouri investigators organized and trained officers for the operation, according to Schmitt.