Predators are Attempting to Prey on Children Isolated During COVID-19; Here's How to Protect Your Children Now

By: Kevin Quinn
| Published 04/09/2020

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HARRIS COUNTY, TX - The Harris County Precinct One Constable’s Office, an affiliate of the Houston Metro Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC), is asking parents to be as vigilant as ever in protecting their children from online child predators. Those who target our children know these are unprecedented times where children are home from school, have more time to spend online, and less supervision as parents are tasked with many additional responsibilities at home.

Your children may be under your roof, but that doesn't mean they are protected from those who wish to target them. If you are not actively watching who they talk to and looking at the content of those conversations you are leaving your children vulnerable to ongoing exploitation. Investigators have personally seen an increase in activity on social media platforms where predators commonly seek out children.

'This is a predator's playground,' said Constable Alan Rosen 'Parents can't be so preoccupied with working now from home or the responsibilities of homeschooling that they neglect their obligation to be involved enough to know who their children are talking to online.'

Recently Houston Metro ICAC conducted a multi-day online undercover initiative led by the Harris County Precinct One Constable’s Office culminating in the arrest of ten individuals, including a USPS letter carrier, a Bandido Gang member and a man who took an Uber to meet what he thought was an underage girl.

The goal of this operation was to identify and apprehend adults using the internet and social media to sexually exploit children by soliciting sex and/or sex-related acts. Officers certified in undercover chat used online personas, in various social media apps, posing as minors. This operation involved numerous law enforcement officers and support personnel, who worked tirelessly in mid-February through early March to effect the arrests and conduct follow up investigation.

Each individual arrested is listed below, along with corresponding information about them and their arrests specifically. Unless otherwise noted the charge for each is an online solicitation of a minor. The potential punishment for that felony is anything ranging from probation or 2-20 years in prison, if convicted.

Constable Rosen offers these tips that will help parents protect their children:

- Look often at your child's phone, laptop or other devices
- Set up a monitoring app and/or increase privacy restrictions
- Read the conversations they are having
- Talk to your child about online safety
- Remind your children they should only talk to people they know in real life
- Encourage them to report inappropriate conversations to a trusted adult

You will find mug shots below, as well as video of the arrests which have been posted to the Precinct One YouTube channel HERE.

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children has many great resources online which can help parents talk to their children about internet safety. You can view a handful of tips we are offering to parents HERE.

For more on the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children please visit https://www.missingkids.org/ or https://www.missingkids.org/NetSmartz.

The Houston Metro Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and Harris County Precinct One Constable’s Office would like to thank its law enforcement partners who participated in this recently initiative.

Those agencies include:
- Houston Police Department
- Harris County Sheriff's Office
- Harris County District Attorney’s Office
- Katy ISD Police Department,
- Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office
- Humble Police Department
- Conroe Police Department
- Missouri Police Department
- Rosenberg Police Department
- Fort Bend County District Attorney’s Office
- Harris County Precinct 5 Constable's Office
- Texas Department of Public Safety
- Cypress Creek Tactical EMS.

Arrested:
Wednesday, February 19th, 2020

Christopher Luera
34 years old
BONDED out $10,000

Jason Gardner
41 years old
BONDED out $20,000

Arnulfo Carrillo Jr.
51 years old
Works for USPS as a letter carrier
BONDED out $10,000

Thursday, February 20, 2020

James Wayne Farr 1919
34 years old
Halfway House Resident

Jesus Arthur Lopez
37 years old
Had beer and condoms
BONDED out $10,000

Raeshkumar Boovaragamoorthy
33 years old
Had condoms
BONDED out $10,000

Justin Eastwood
33 years old
Arrived in Uber
BONDED out $10,000

Friday, February 21, 2020

Andre Lashane Martinez
40 years old
Member of Bandido Gang
BONDED out $10,000

Victor Aaron Valverde
30 years old
Arrived with Condoms
BONDED out $10,000

Eduardo Olivares -Garica
39 years old
REMAINS IN JAIL AS OF 2/27/20, BOND SET at $30,000

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