20 arrested by Merced police in online sex trafficking sting

January 29, 2019 | Brainwave Science


20 suspects have been arrested in Fresno, California. They face charges for human trafficking and prostitution. The Merced Police have confirmed this. They participated in a statewide operation targeting human trafficking and prostitution called “Reclaim and Rebuild” from Jan. 24 to Jan. 26, according to a news release.

The Merced Police Department DART Team along with GVSU officers conducted undercover operations where they responded to and posted online advertisements on known commercial sex websites.

Once the officers were contacted, they negotiated sex acts for money. Once the suspects arrived to engage in the acts of prostitution, they were arrested by the officials.

Christian Cortes-Reyes, 22, 43-year-old Jose Dematos and 30-year-old Thai Vang were arrested after responding to the sex ads set up by police. Also, 30-year-old Billy Fountain was arrested and charged with suspicion of pimping and supervision of a prostitute. A 17-year-old male juvenile was also arrested and charged with human trafficking of a minor under the age of 18.

Police said they were able to locate the rescued juvenile’s grandmother and obtain an emergency protective order. The juvenile was reunited with the grandmother, according to the news release.

A total of 20 people was arrested during the operation. Merced Police Sgt. Robert Solis said all the arrests were made at locations in the City of Merced. Police said of the 20 people arrested during the operation, ten men and eight women were arrested on suspicion of solicitation of prostitution. Two men were arrested on suspicion of pimping and supervision of prostitution with one of the men being charged with human trafficking of a minor under the age of 18


Merced has not seen such convictions for the first time. In October 2018, a Merced man was arrested on suspicion of soliciting sex and killing a 17-year-old-girl. Read the story here.

A 2004 TNS poll reported 15 percent of all men have paid for sex and 30 percent of single men over age 30 have paid for sex. Moreover,  in an interview of over 200 men in Chicago, 83% viewed buying sex as a form of addiction, 57% suspected that the women they paid were abused as children, and 40% said they are usually intoxicated when they purchase sex.

Prostitution is illegal in the vast majority of the United States as a result of state laws rather than federal laws. It is, however, legal in some rural counties within the state of Nevada. Prostitution nevertheless occurs throughout the country.

To crack down on this illegal activity, a massive amount of manpower is needed. Also, using conventional investigation techniques, there is the need for a coordinated nationwide crackdown to bust the prostitution rings. Cyber-crime investigation needs to be carried out in parallel since most of the solicitation is carried out using websites and social platforms.

To embark on such a massive plan using an existing technique translates into massive expenditure. Besides, the enforcement agencies need time, laboratories for processing evidence, etc. 20 arrested Merced police

There is a pressing need for modern technology to take over interrogation and investigation. Accuracy, reliability, and cost-effectiveness should be the characteristics of investigative techniques which are used in solving a modern crime. 20 arrested Merced police


Brainwave Science is a Massachusetts based company which has introduced a modern technology which has completely revamped investigation and intelligence gathering. It is non-invasive and does not need the test subject to be tortured or to be made to suffer. Yet, it does not compromise in any way on the amount of intelligence it can gather. In fact, it is widely applicable to all sorts of areas such as prostitution, cybercrime, financial fraud, kidnapping, hijacking, national-security, border-security, immigration, and counter-terrorism.

This awe-inspiring technology is called iCognative. It is backed up by a proven science which quickly detects concealed information by measuring brain waves. The criminal plans and executes the crime, and thus his or her brain is aware of the minutest details. They are embedded in his memory. iCognative exposes a human’s (usually a suspect or a witness) brain to pictures, words or phrases related to the specific crime under investigation. The brain’s response to such stimuli is immediate and involuntary. The brain responds differently depending on whether or not the brain possesses prior awareness of the information conveyed by the stimuli. iCognative system uses a specialized headset which measures the brain responses. and analyses these in the computer system. The result of whether or not incriminating information is present in the brain of the test subject is reported immediately. This iCognative test helps the investigators to quickly move from screening one test subject to the other, and to narrow down to the most likely subject.

In this case, iCognative test should be administered to all the 20 arrested persons, and also those who were arrested in similar cases in the past. For stimuli, the test administrator can compile details such as records of accessing the online websites for soliciting sex, records of posting the advertisements, call and transaction records for the earlier purchase of sex. The suspects who were suspected of pimping can be shown stimuli such as details of earlier known victims, suspected hideouts and brothels, sites of kidnapping, phone and social media records of interactions associated with pimping, etc. 20 arrested Merced police

iCognative can accurately and reliably indicate if a test subject possesses knowledge of a specific crime. At the same time, it can be used to de-construct and get an idea about the structure of a criminal organization, find the position of the test subject in the hierarchy of his or her criminal organization. iCognative, by Brainwave Science, is highly customizable, 99.9% accurate, non-invasive, and easy to learn.

Investigating agencies in Merced must try out the awesome technology called iCognative,  by Brainwave Science to speed up investigations and to put the guilty behind bars. 20 arrested Merced police

Main source: ABC