The Florida Sheriffs Association (FSA) Task Force announced the results of Operation Breaking Chains on Thursday, aimed at putting an end to human trafficking
A strategic initiative, conducted across 16 Florida counties, focuses on reducing human trafficking throughout the state and prosecuting those responsible for trafficking individuals. FSA reported that during the month-long operation, 29 victims were recovered, 31 traffickers were identified, and a total of 363 arrests took place during the Task Force Operation Breaking Chains.
“Amplifying the safety on our roads and waterways is crucial for all Floridians, including our children, and those who visit the Sunshine State,” said FSA President and Gilchrist County Sheriff Bobby Schultz. “The dedicated enforcement of state laws that deal with businesses suspected of human trafficking and online operations will help to keep us all safe.”
Along with the arrests, FSA spent over 1,0000 hours gathering intel at multiple business locations, while conducting over 300 highway and waterway stops.
Chris Nocco, Pasco County Sheriff and chair of the FSA Task Force, noted the “unique approach” used by the group, and touted the impact the mission will have moving forward.
“I want to thank FSA President Sheriff Schultz for his leadership of the FSA and this operation as well as the 16 counties that participated in this important operation,” said Pasco County Sheriff and chair of the FSA Task Force Chris Nocco. “The goal, as always, is to protect victims. I credit the unique approach this operation took to its success. We not only focused on arrests but surrounded victims with resources that will be impactful in the future and allow us to break the cycle of human trafficking while also holding those responsible.”
The following are the statewide totals:
- 16 total Sheriff’s Offices participated in the month-long operation.
- 29 victims recovered
- 31 traffickers identified
- 4 traffickers arrested
- 324 interdiction stops made both highway and waterway
- 4 victims rescued for interdiction stops
- Over 1,000 hours doing knock and talks at multiple business locations
- 363 total arrests
- 7,591 social media and sign messages distributed
- 33 non-government community-based organizations assisted during the operation