POLK COUNTY, Fla. — Nearly 40 people were arrested in an undercover sting targeting people who traveled to Polk County for the sole purpose to have sex with minors and online prostitution, deputies said.
The undercover sting took place from May 15 to May 21.
The men responded to online ads they thought were from children, but were really from undercover detectives, deputies said.
"These predators are really out there, trying to violate children. All it takes is one glance at the conversations these predators have with our undercover detectives. They lurk in chat rooms and online, ready to groom and violate your children. Fortunately, we've prevented at least 19 of them from doing so. The things that these predators say to children are vile, disgusting and not fit for anyone except trained detectives to read. And even seasoned, trained detectives are repulsed. These predators need to be locked up, and stay locked up and away from children,” said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd in a news release.
The suspects solicited who they thought were children as young as 10 years old for sex acts, deputies said.
Six of the suspects are from Polk County, Davenport, Haines City, Kissimmee, Lake Wales, and Lakeland, deputies said.
The other 13 people drove from Orlando, Plant City, Brandon, Tampa, Pasco County, Ocala, Jacksonville, Pinnellas County, Cocoa and Palm Bay to meet the children for sex, deputies said.
Traveling to meet a minor arrests:
Alan John Lovejoy, 41, of Lakeland
Emmanuel Vincent, 25, Cocoa
Michael Grove, 26, Davenport
Omar Paz, 21, Plant City
Nicholas Ramos, 20, Palm Bay
Matthew Craig Booth, 19, Orlando
Wayne Keith Parry, 53, Orlando
Mohamed Catila, 27, Orlando
Victor Sayan-Arias, 29, Brandon
Eric Norris, 28, Jacksonville
Juan Carlos Castro, 35, Lakeland
Tyler Duncan, 26, Tampa
Fouad Jelda, 29, Kissimmee
Robert Wright, 55, Hudson
Robert Heintz, 41, Kissimmee
Arnaldo Madera, 30, Orlando
Donnie Hallock, 31, Orlando
Reginald Donnell Neal, 20, Haines City
Raul Alberto Rivera, 21, Pinellas Park
Child pornography arrest:
Todd Alan Sebring, 49, Lake Wales
Cassandra Zepeda, 23, unknown location
Robert Heard, 47, Winter Haven
Joseph William Bil, 21, Ocala
Leah Alessandrini, 33, Davenport
Cheri Malkemes, 26, Davenport
Dushaun Mohammed Bonaparte, 23, Orlando
David Oliverso, 32, Davenport
Sara Rochell Thomas, 25, Davenport
Robert Alexander Zarate, 45, Davenport
Kimberly Rose, 48, Ocala
Ramon Vendrell, 27, Davenport
Raevon McBride, 26, Kissimmee
Khody Sanford, 22, Highland Park, MI
Vanessa Renee James, 29, Orlando
Samuel Edward Nelsen, 32, Clermont
Aaron Realmuto, 27, Winter Garden
Paula Zuniga-Casteneda, 28, Orlando
Diana Espinosa, 26, Orlando
Richard Weisburg, 60, Clermont