FDLE cybercrimes task force may boost arrests

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CENTRAL FLORIDA - The Florida Department of Law Enforcement said its new task force will lock up more Central Florida sexual predators and other cybercriminals.

The group will join police officers, deputies, state prosecutors and federal agents to speed up investigations.

Agents said they expect it could bump up the number of served search warrants from one a week to one a day.

Investigators said that in many cases, predators go to homes to have sex with underage girls.

Urainna Gray is a mother and said those actions disgust her.

"It's scary because it could be your door at any time," Gray said.

The task force will deal with child predators and other cybercrimes including, child porn, cyberbullying, cyberfraud and computer hacking.

"There is nothing that a criminal can do on a computer that we won't find," said FDLE agent Jeff Duncan.

The task force if only focused on Central Florida.

Duncan said the extra manpower could double the number of arrests.

"It's right in our backyard. We know what's going on. We know what the trends are in our area, which could be different than the Panhandle, than Miami," said Duncan.

WFTV found out there were 306 arrests last year in Central Florida, and investigators said every time they bait someone online and make an arrest, there were 10 other predators who chatted but never showed up.

The FDLE said it is setting aside 5,000-square-feet in the back of the FDLE building to house the task force.

"It takes some stress off me to know that they are going to do it. I hope it gets stronger and just knocks it out," said Gray.

FDLE said it was also going to be visiting churches, schools and other spots in the community to educate people about the task force and how they can protect themselves from cybercrimes.