Buyers of sex are increasingly becoming the target of law enforcement efforts to end prostitution and sex trafficking. Police recognize that sex buyers perpetuate a violent, exploitative industry. If no one were buying sex, pimps would not be supplying bars, back alleys, and websites with victims.

Under the leadership of Sheriff Dart, Cook County (IL) Sheriff’s Office has organized eight “National Day of Johns Arrests.” The most recent sting ran for 18 days, from July 17 through August 3. 28 law enforcement agencies in 14 states simultaneously conducted sting activities on the streets, in hotels, in brothels, via the internet, and elsewhere.

Public awareness around the operation was made possible by a grant from Demand Abolition. This includes the replication of more than 4,000 “Johns School” DVDs for distribution to law enforcement agencies nationwide. Produced by the Cook County Sheriff’s Office, these DVDs provide an overview of content found in first offender prostitution programs, or “john schools.” As in the classes, the DVD aims to deter men from purchasing sex by educating them about the harms and consequences of prostitution on themselves, on the people they purchase, and on the community.

Demand Abolition did not fund, nor was involved in, the logistics of the police operations.

Participating Jurisdictions

Participants by Sweep:12345678

Cook County Sheriff’s Office (IL)
Aurora Police Department (IL)
Bexar County Sheriff’s Office (TX)
Boston Police Department (MA)
Chandler Police Department (AZ)
Cincinnati Police Department (OH)
Dallas Police Department (TX)
Dayton Police Department (OH)
Denver Police Department (CO)
Elgin Police Department (IL)
Gary Police Department (IN)
Gerald D. Vick Human Trafficking Taskforce (MN)
Glendale Police Department (AZ)
Greenville County Sheriff’s Office (SC)
Harris County Sheriff’s Office (TX)
Hennipen County Sheriff’s Office (MN)
Houston Police Department (TX)
Indianapolis Metro Police (IN)
Kane County Sheriff’s Office (IL)
Lake County Sheriff’s Office (IN)
Lake County Sheriff’s Office (IL)
Lansing Police Department (IL)
Las Vegas Police Department (NV)
Los Angeles Police Department (CA)
Memphis Police Department (TN)
Mesa Police Department (AZ)
Miamisburg Police Department (OH)
Minneapolis Police Department (MN)
Minnesota FBI (MN)
Minot Police Department (ND)
Newport News Police Department (VA)
Nashville Metro Police Department (TN)
Oklahoma City Police Department (OK)
Pittsburgh Police Department (PA)
Phoenix FBI CSEC Unit (AZ)
Phoenix Police Department (AZ)
Portland Police Department (OR)
Riverside Police Department (OH)
Roseville Police Department (MN)
St. Paul Police Department (MN)
San Antonio Police Department (TX)
San Jose Police Department (CA)
Seattle Police Department (WA)
Sharonville Police Department (OH)
Tempe Police Department (AZ)
The FBI and other federal, state, and county agencies have worked closely with participating police departments and sheriff’s offices. For complete listings, see our press releases.

Press Releases and Coverage

Press Release – August 6, 2014 Nearly 500 Sex Buyers Arrested in National Sex Trafficking Sting Operation

Press Release – February 6, 2014 National Super Bowl Sex Trafficking Sting Results in 373 Arrest

Press Release – July 30, 2013 National sex trafficking sting yields 359 arrests

Press Release – February 7, 2013 “John” sting yields more than 200 arrests

Press Release – October 17, 2012 Columbus Day 2012: Law Enforcement Agencies Across the Nation Continue to Target “Johns”

Press Release – August 20, 2012 Buyer beware: Law enforcement across the nation targets “Johns” to end human trafficking

Press Release – February 7, 2012 Championship Numbers Tell Sad Story

Press Release – October 11, 2011 Cook County, Illinois, Announces Results of First-Ever Nationally Coordinated Sting Operation to Arrest Johns and Mute Demand for Prostituted Individuals

Sweep Eight Coverage

Cops Arrest 500 Johns in Sex Trade Crackdown
Law enforcement agencies across the country collaborated in a recent series of sex stings that netted the arrests of almost 500 men seeking to buy sex and 14 pimps and traffickers.

 

Previous Coverage

Police jailing ‘johns’ to fight prostitution
The vice squad of the Columbus Police Division announced yesterday that it is changing the way it fights prostitution.

‘National Day of Johns Arrests’ nets 359 apprehensions nationwide
The [NDJA] sweep ran for 21 days from July 7 through July 28, bringing together 36 agencies in a widespread crackdown.

Cops focusing more on “johns” in prostitution busts
For years, police said, their focus was arresting prostitutes, especially those working on the street. It’s a significant change in attitude, said Dayton police Sgt. Chris Fischer.

66 men arrested in Cook County following nationwide prostitution sting
“Human trafficking is a worldwide concern that is affecting even the smallest of communities and neighborhoods and occurring in even the safest of places,” said Sheriff Tom Dart in a prepared statement.

LVMPD “Buyer Beware” Program Arrests 144
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police announced the arrests of 144 individuals during a 10-day nationwide anti-prostitution operation named “Buyer Beware.”

Want to buy sex in Massachusetts? Think again
An op-ed by Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis and Ambassador Swanee Hunt warns buyers of sex in Massachusetts to think again.

BPD’s Web hooker sting nets 15 would-be johns
Boston cops launched a crackdown that has netted 15 would-be customers just as the penalty for seeking sex for cash is about to skyrocket.

Cook County leads 8-state prostitution sting
Police in eight states participated in prostitution stings over the past 10 days, coordinated by Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart.

The prostitution turnstile: 32 men arrested in sting
The Cincinnati Police Department’s vice unit took part in a nationwide sting operation to catch men soliciting for sex from a prostitute.

Dozens charged during operation to target johns in Newport News
“When I first started this job, I never thought that prostitution was what it was,” confessed D, a police officer working undercover as a hooker.