6 Arrested, Charged With Child Exploitation - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

6 Arrested, Charged With Child Exploitation

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6 people, including 2 Fort Stewart soldiers were arrested over the weekend in connection with a Savannah FBI led Southeast Georgia Child Exploitation Task Force and ICAC, the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.

"The mission of our task force is first and foremost to rescue juveniles who've been victimized by adults," explained FBI Special Agent Eugene Kowel. "2nd to hold these adults accountable for their crimes and 3rd to do whatever we can to stop these acts from happening in the future."

"Rescuing children, preventing these acts from occurring is a priority for the bureau, not just in Savannah but across the country," explained Kowel.

The FBI says 49-year-old Bengie Kevin Odum, 27-year-old Raymond Patrick Perez, 56-year-old John Thomas Pratt, 35-year-old Michael Gilbert Roasles, 31-year-old Jason Bryant Williams, and 25-year-old Daniel Corvette Powell, were all arrested and charged with state charges of sexual exploitation of children

The investigation revealed that they traveled to Pooler, for purposes of having sex with a minor child. Perez and Powell were both stationed at Fort Stewart.

"The aggressive nature of this crime is that they are willing to travel 100's of miles at times," explained Pooler Police Chief Mark Revenew. "Pooler is no different than any other community, but we are going to deal with it proactively instead of reactively.'

"There's no such thing as anonymity on the Internet," said Chief Revenew. "And people think they are and can commit these crimes undetected. They are sadly mistaken."

The operation was designed to locate and recover juveniles sexually exploited through prostitution and to identify and arrest those who are exploiting the juveniles. The Task Force is comprised of agents and officers from the FBI, GBI, Liberty County Sheriff's Office, Effingham County Sheriff's Office, and the Pooler Police Department.

 

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