2017-10-26 / News

In brief

FBI busts sex traffickers

Twelve children were saved from juvenile sex trafficking in Michigan last week. The FBI led the operation with state police and the Flint, Flint Township, Grand Blanc Township and Mott Community College police departments, among others, from Oct. 12 to 15. In addition to recovering the children, agents arrested eight traffickers or pimps and their associates. Another 46 adults involved in prostitution were placed into temporary custody. Nationwide, 84 minors were recovered and 120 traffickers arrested as part of Operation Cross Country XI. As part of Operation Cross Country XI, FBI agents and task force officers staged operations in hotels, casinos, and truck stops, as well as on street corners and Internet websites. Nationally, the youngest victim recovered during this year’s operation was 3 months old, and the average age of victims recovered during the operation was 15 years old. Minors recovered during Cross Country Operations are offered assistance from state protective services and the FBI’s Victim Services Division. Depending on the level of need, victims are offered medical and mental health counseling, and other services. — L.R.

West Nile found

A house sparrow in Genesee County has tested positive for West Nile virus (WNV). This is the first positive report of WNV in Genesee County this year. More than 200 birds throughout the state have tested positive for West Nile virus this year. Genesee County Health Department (GCHD) reminds residents that the most effective way to protect against West Nile virus and other mosquito borne illnesses is to prevent mosquito bites. A person may contract West Nile virus through the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes become infected when they feed on infected birds. Most people bitten by infected mosquitos show no symptoms of illness. However, some develop headaches, fever, confusion, or muscle weakness. WNV also can cause more serious neurological illnesses, such as meningitis and encephalitis. To reduce the mosquito population, empty and scrub containers such as flower pots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet dishes, bird baths and old tires that have standing water. — L.R.

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