Police Arrest 34 in Child Trafficking Sting ‘Operation Broken Hearts’

February 20, 2021 Updated: February 20, 2021

Law enforcement officials in Arizona said Friday that an operation targeting sexual predators yielded 34 arrests.

The multi-agency effort, dubbed “Operation Broken Hearts,” focused on predators who are alleged to have committed sex crimes or human trafficking.

“Throughout the operational period, officers and undercover detectives placed ads on websites and apps which are commonly sought out by suspects seeking illegal sex acts with children. These suspects solicited and/or brokered deals for various sex acts and were subsequently arrested,” the Phoenix Police Department, one of the agencies involved, said in a statement.

The suspects range in age from 21 to 66. Most are male.

The Mesa, Tempe, and Chandler police departments assisted in the operation, along with Homeland Security Investigations and the office of Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich.

“The Mesa Police Department is proud to have partnered with multiple valley agencies for Operation Broken Hearts,” the department said in a statement.

The Chandler Police Department said the operation was successful because of “great collaboration.”

The agencies regularly target predators. A sting last year, dubbed “Operation Silent Predator,” led to 27 arrests.

“It’s like fishing. You put the bait out, the fish will come,” Phoenix Police Commander Jim Gallagher told reporters after that sting ended.

Epoch Times Photo
The people arrested in a sting in Arizona. (Phoenix Police Department)

The names and charges against those arrested in the new sting are:

Eric Niles, 38, Chandler: human trafficking from Missouri.
Fred Yazzie, 29, Phoenix: child sex trafficking and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Hugo Munoz, 48, Mesa: child sex trafficking, money laundering, and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Tristan Usleman, 29, AG’s Office: luring of a minor for sexual exploitation.
Raymond Rendon, 21, Phoenix: child sex trafficking.
Jonathan Holt, 21, Mesa: child sex trafficking, luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, attempted sex conduct with a minor, and money laundering.
Justin Walowitz, 39, Phoenix: child sex trafficking, luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Mark Perry, 35, Tempe: luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Otilio Rendon-Meneses, 62, Phoenix: child sex trafficking and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Gregory Ryan, 37, Tempe: luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
William Kellin, 58, Phoenix: child sex trafficking, luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Brandon Price, 34, Mesa: aggravated luring of a minor, luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, child sex trafficking, and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Marcos Benitez-Leyva, 34, Phoenix: child sex trafficking, luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Agustin Johnson, 59, Phoenix: child sex trafficking and  attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Karlton Clemons, 59, Phoenix: luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Chris Flamard, 55, Mesa: aggravated luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Erik Rodriguez, 37, Mesa: child sex trafficking, attempted sex conduct with a minor, and money laundering.
Robert Favela, 37, Phoenix: luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Tyvan Hunter, 33, Mesa: child sex trafficking, money laundering, and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Wilmont Parker, 37, Mesa: luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Mark Smith, 42, Tempe: aggravated luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
John Meadows, 60, Phoenix: luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Thomas Greenlaw, 23, Chandler: child sex trafficking and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Mikhael Elkhoury, 66, Phoenix: child sex trafficking, luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Thomas Fisher, 43, Tempe: child sex trafficking and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Jefferson Coffman, 55, Tempe: aggravated luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Brian Weigler, 58, Tempe: attempted sex conduct with a minor and luring of a minor for sexual exploitation.
Hilario Samudio, 29, Phoenix: child sex trafficking, aggravated luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Shawn Williams, 36, Phoenix: child sex trafficking, attempted sex conduct with a minor, luring of a minor for sexual exploitation, and possession of dangerous drugs.
Thomas Casey, 57, Mesa and Tempe: aggravated luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Stephen Alavi, 26, Mesa: luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Jessica Mihalovits, 39, Mesa: aggravated luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.
Matthew Shaffer, 23, Mesa: aggravated luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor, and furnishing harmful material to a minor.
Nicholas Williams, 32, Phoenix: aggravated luring of a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sex conduct with a minor.

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