RIVERSIDE – Two underage girls were rescued and 15 people were arrested during a two-night sting to combat sex trafficking in Riverside and San Bernardino counties, the FBI announced today.
A task force that included local law enforcement agencies conducted the operation last Thursday and Friday in Riverside, Hemet and Ontario. One girl was rescued in Riverside County and one in San Bernardino County.
In addition to the rescue of the minors — whose ages and cities weren’t released — there were 15 arrests involving pandering, pimping, prostitution and human trafficking, according to the FBI’s Los Angeles field office.
Among the people arrested in San Bernardino County were 22-year-old Shawnique Drake of Desert Hot Springs and 22-year-old Tiffany Amirmoini of Chino, both on suspicion of prostitution. Thirteen other people were arrested in the two counties over two days, according to the FBI. Many of the other suspects were from out of the area.
The suspects’ cases will be submitted to the Riverside and San Bernardino county district attorney’s offices, according to the FBI.
The sting was organized by the Inland Empire Child Exploitation and Prostitution Task Force, which includes the Ontario, Pomona, San Bernardino and Riverside police departments, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department and the FBI. The Riverside County Anti Human Trafficking Task Force and the Hemet, Upland and Chino police departments also participated.
The Inland Empire Child Exploitation and Prostitution Task Force investigates child exploitation, mainly sexual trafficking of minors. The task force is part of the FBI’s National Innocence Lost Initiative, which started in 2003 to address criminal enterprises involved in the domestic sex trafficking of children.