U.S. Marshals in southern Ohio and southern West Virginia have found 45 missing children and arrested 179 people in connection with human trafficking.
In a press release sent out Monday, the U.S. Marshals Service announced that operation “Autumn Hope” had been successful in recovering the 45 missing children as part of a multi-agency collaboration to combat human trafficking and find missing and exploited children:
“During the month of October, the U.S. Marshals Service Offices in Southern Ohio and Southern West Virginia, in conjunction with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and the Central Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force participated in operation ‘Autumn Hope.’ Operation Autumn Hope was a multi-agency enforcement operation focused on human trafficking and the location and recovery of missing and exploited children. During the operation 45 missing children were recovered by the U.S. Marshals and 179 arrests were made by the Central Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force. In addition, 20 children were located per the request of law enforcement to ensure the child’s well-being. The operation was supported by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), and Ohio state and local agencies,” the agency said.