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St Marys man arrested in multi-state child sexual exploitation operation

St Marys man arrested in multi-state child sexual exploitation operation.

A St. Marys, GA man, along with 75 others, were arrested in a multi-state child sexual exploitation operation.

Christopher Thomas Toler, 54, of St. Marys was arrested for crimes and charged with a felony pursuant O.C.G.A. 16-12-100.2 and sexual exploitation of children. Additional charges are likely after analysis of seized digital devices.

The multi-state operation, known as Operation Southern Impact II, coordinated by nine Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia. According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI), a total of 222 law enforcement agencies participated in the operation. These task forces focus on persons who possess and distribute child pornography and those sexually exploiting children using technology on the internet.

The investigation also expanded into other states such as Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee. These leads were also sent to each state’s internet task force units.

Many of the people arrested had occupations including postal worker, non-profit employee, small business owner, store clerk, mechanic, daycare administrator, pastor, construction worker and magician. The age of the arrestees ranged from age 17 to 72.

Toler, 54, of St. Marys had a position in human resources.

In Georgia, 34 people were arrested during Operation Southern Impact II.  Many of those arrests involved the possession and/or distribution of child pornography.  While investigators regularly target the trading of all types of child pornography, in Operation Southern Impact II investigators targeted those seeking out and distributing the most violent child pornography involving infants and toddlers.

Eight arrested in Georgia were registered sex offenders and four of those individuals were charged with new crimes related to child exploitation.

Camden County Sheriff’s Office assisted with the multi-state operation.

To view the entire press release from the GBI on Operation Southern Impact II and other state and local organizations involved, click here.

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