YAKIMA COUNTY, Wash. - A multi-agency, multi-day operation has led to the arrests of 16 dangerous sexual predators who had targeted children in Yakima County.

Washington State Patrol says "Operation Net Nanny" is the 17th operation spearheaded by the WSP's Missing and Exploited Children Task Force. Overall, MECTF has netted a total of 287 arrrests while rescuing more than 31 children across the state.

"While the internet is a powerful tool for information in people's lives, criminals use the same technology to commit unspeakable crimes against vulnerable populations including the young. Working with our local, state, and federal partners in law enforcement in operations like Net Nanny, we use every available resource to pursue the guilty and protect the innocent.” says WSP Chief John R. Batiste. “This operation is aimed at protecting our vulnerable children and making our communities safer.

The primary crimes investigated included attempted first-degree rape of a child, attempted second-degree rape of a child, commercial sexual abuse of a minor, communication with a minor for imoral purposes and sexual exploitation of a minor.

“The crimes these individuals were seeking to engage in are completely reprehensible,” said Eben Roberts, Acting Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Seattle. “Were it not for the efforts of HSI and our law enforcement partners, these criminals would still be actively searching out child victims. I commend all of those involved for their dedication to protecting the innocent, by eliminating these individuals from the community.”

The 16 individuals arrested during the operation are:

 Thomson, Frederick W., 67, Union Gap

 Tschauner, Bradley V., 29, Ephrata

 Raymond, John B., 59, Yakima

 Erlandson, Hayden A., 22, Yakima

 Curry, David E., 34, Kennewick

 Littlebull, Kendrick y., 20, Yakima

 Martinez, Lucas N., 34, White Swan

 Gaidaichuk, Veniamin N., 28, Everett

 Robertson, Richie H., 21, Yakima

 Atkins, Brent M., 40, Naches

 Hernandez, Christian, 24, Union Gap

 Ramirez, Jessie J., 29, Yakima

 Sanchez, Breton L., 18, Yakima

 Randhawa, Rakinder S., 26, Sunnyside

 Hudson, Fidel A., 25, Yakima

 Cool, Benjamin J., 24, Nampa, ID

Anyone with information related to the suspects listed, or information leading to the identity of victims potentially involved in these cases please contact MECTF at mectf@wsp.wa.gov.

The collaborative effort involved over 70 law enforcement officers, agents and staff and numerous agencies.