Tehama County District Attorney Gregg Cohen announced Monday the completion of “Operation Wicked Web” a three month undercover investigation targeting criminal activity on the internet in Tehama County.
For the past three months District Attorney Investigators with the DA Bureau of Investigation have been identifying, investigating and arresting persons who use the internet for criminal activity, specifically narcotics dealers and sexual predators.
Cohen said undercover investigators posed as persons interested in buying narcotics. The Investigators arranged to buy and sell narcotics with people they met on-line. The investigators also posed as underage children and chatted with persons interested in having sex with the minor, Cohen said. In each instance the persons were identified and subsequently arrested for their illegal conduct.
“This is a proactive approach to fighting crime in our county by getting to the drug dealers before their drugs hit the street,” Cohen told Action News. “This same approach also stops child sex predators before they actually meet with real children.”
Operation Wicked Web netted a total of 26 arrests. The arrests included two men who posed as tutors so they could meet minors for sex, a social worker, a man who had similar pending charges in Siskiyou County, a man with pending Federal Child Pornography charges and a female minor who was prostituting herself.
The following is a summary of “Operation Wicked Web”:
•Arrests – 26 (25 Adults and 1 Minor)
•Search Warrants – 4
•Marijuana – 176.8 pounds
•Marijuana Plants – 21
•Concentrated Cannabis – 10 grams
•Hydrocodone Pills – 52
•Psilocybin Mushrooms – 9 grams
•Assault Rifles – 3
•Asset Forfeiture - $36,355.00