FAIRFAX, Va. (WDVM) — United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced their 2019 project addition for Homeland Security Investigations’ Cyber Crime Center celebrating the grand opening of Operation Angel Watch.
Joanna Ip, HSI assistant director for operations technology and cyber division said “HSI cyber crime center, also known as C3 has been leading the way for investigations into cyber crime. One of the missions that C3 does is to conduct child exploitation investigations and the angel watch center is a valuable addition to that.”
Leaders cut the ribbon to celebrate the opening of Operation Angel Watch targeting individuals who have been previously convicted of traveling overseas to find minors to sexually abuse them or exploit them.
“What we do is we take information from the state registry list of convicted child sex offenders and notify the countries that they’re traveling to,” said Ip.
According to officials, the Angel Watch Center was funded through International Megan’s Law, costing 1.5 million.
Matt Wright, Unit Chief for child exploitation investigation unit said, “It’s an additional part of our effort to help combat child exploitation through our overall child exploitation investigations with HSI in 2019 we arrested more than 3700 individuals responsible for exploiting children.”
According to ICE, throughout the years, HSI child exploitation prevention efforts have expanded from a small center in Fairfax to a worldwide initiative.