Six arrested in online child exploitation sting

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(Top, left to right) Josef James Dilly, Victor Manuel Vascot, Isaac Figueroa Jr, (bottom, left to right) Justin Earl Kepler, Jesse Franklin Quidachay, Demerick Deon Hearne (AG Paxton’s office)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office has announced that the Child Exploitation Unit and Human Trafficking Unit, working with Copperas Cove police, have netted six arrests in a three-day sting operation targeting online predators.

According to a press release from Paxton’s office the following arrests were made:

  • Josef James Dilly, 31, of Copperas Cove, arrested November 20; accused of online solicitation of a minor
  • Victor Manuel Vascot, 45, of Killeen, arrested November 20; accused of online solicitation of a minor
  • Isaac Figueroa Jr., 28, of Round Rock, arrested on November 21; accused of online solicitation of a minor
  • Justin Earl Kepler, 31, of Lampasas, arrested on November 21; accused of online solicitation of a minor
  • Jesse Franklin Quidachay, 37, of Copperas Cove, arrested on November 21; accused of online solicitation of a minor
  • Demerick Deon Hearne, 47, of Copperas Cove, arrested November 20; accused of prostitution

All suspects were transferred to the Coryell County Jail.

“The grotesque targeting of children is a nationwide issue, and this serves as a reminder that our communities must remain vigilant to protect the most vulnerable from exploitation,” said Attorney General Paxton. “I thank the hard-working investigators with my office’s Child Exploitation Unit and Human Trafficking Unit, and the brave police officers of Copperas Cove Police Department for stopping these child-predators from potentially harming more innocent children.”

The Child Exploitation Unit was created in 2003 to address the limited resources law enforcement has to fight the threat of online child predators and to investigate online child pornography.

The Human Trafficking Unit was created in 2016 with the goal of fighting human trafficking in Texas.

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