The results of “Operation Child Predator II”, a sting operation that was conducted by the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Auburndale Police Department, and Winter Haven Police Department in Florida were released late last week.
The two-week operation that started on June 2nd yielded 12 arrests, among those was a Disney World employee. During the investigation, detectives posed as children on various social media platforms, mobile apps, and online dating sites “to investigate those who prey upon and travel to meet children for unlawful sexual activity.”
A bus driver for Walt Disney World, Zachery Hudson (30) was arrested as a result of this investigation.
Polk County Sheriff’s Office alleges that Hudson engaged in an online conversation with what he thought was a 15-year-old girl. At one point the detective pretending to be the 15-year-old asked Hudson if her age was okay. Hudson asked, “my being older doesn’t bother you” and later said “age is just a number,” according to officials.
Eventually, the conversation moved to text and Hudson allegedly described what he wanted to do to the girl sexually adding he would be “honored” to take her virginity. The sheriff’s office also alleges that Hudson sent nude pictures of himself. He also told what he thought was a 15-year-old girl that “what we said could get us all in trouble.”
Sheriff Grady Judd of Polk County during a press conference alleged Hudson told the girl multiple times that she had to stay quiet about their relationship, that it had to be “our secret”.
Judd paraphrased something Hudson allegedly told the undercover detective, “You know, I could go to jail. But I’d risk it for spending some time with you. I’d risk going to jail.”
Judd added, “So if your bus was running late at Disney, he was busy taking pictures of himself and talking trash to what he thought was a little girl.”
Hudson was arrested in Orlando and booked into Orange Couty Jail, he faces one count of use of a two-way communication device to commit a felony and one count of transmission of material harmful to a minor.
Hudson is not the only Disney connected person to be arrested during one of the Polk County stings in the last year.
In August of last year, three Disney employees were arrested in an underage sex sting conducted by Polk County. One of whom Sheriff Judd highlighted during a press conference, was Kenneth Javier Aquino (26). Aquino, a lifeguard at Dinsey Animal Kingdom Lodge.
“He left his girlfriend, who is seven months pregnant with his child, to have sex with a child,” Judd told reporters.
In a human trafficking campaign that was conducted in March, Polk County reported that four Disney employees were arrested. This operation was conducted over six days and focused on human trafficking, prostitution, and child predators.
Xavier Jackson (27), worked as a lifeguard at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. Deputies allege Jackson sent sexual images and graphic descriptions of “what he wanted to do” to an undercover detective posing as a 14-year-old girl and bragged about working as a lifeguard at the resort.
Another Disney employee that was arrested was a 24-year-old man who worked at the Cosmic restaurant and had worked for Disney for four years.
In a segment done by Fox 13 Tampa Bay on last August’s arrests, the main station reporter remarks, “it seems like the sheriff’s office does this kind of sing every other month, yet the people that are out there looking for victims either they don’t care or their just not getting the message.”
Field reporter Ken Suarez replies, “We’re doing this story as you said, all the time, unfortunately. You have to wonder how many people are out there that wanna have sex with kids or even scarier thought how many people are out there that may want to have sex with your kid.”
It doesn’t appear that the undercover operations have slowed down the predators in the area as Disney employees seem to keep getting caught in the net.
We can only hope that what appears to be a trend, actually isn’t.