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Press Release

Joint Investigation Nets Multiple Arrests In Undercover Sex Trafficking Operation

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Jacksonville, FL – United States Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez announces the arrests of Justin Latronica (30, Orange Park), James Allen Shook (48, Weeki Wachee), and Timothy Veres, III (Jacksonville, 24) for attempted online enticement of a minor to engage in sexual activity. Veres was also charged with soliciting for images depicting the sexual abuse of a child. Each faces a minimum mandatory penalty of 10 years, and up to life, in federal prison.

According to court records, in January 2020, Latronica, Shook, and Veres each traveled to an undercover location for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity with individuals they believed to be between 12 and 14 years old.

These arrests were part of a joint operation conducted between January 24 and January 27, 2020, in Orange Park Florida. The agencies involved include the Clay County Sheriff’s Office, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, and Homeland Security Investigations, with assistance from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, and the North Florida ICAC task force. The proactive operation was conducted to identify and arrest those who perform predatory acts and exploit children online.

As part of the operation, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office also arrested two individuals, Abhishek Shah (30, Jacksonville) and Che’ Jenkins Jr. (22, Jacksonville), who have each been charged in state court with violating state law by traveling to meet a minor to engage in an unlawful sex act, soliciting a child for unlawful sexual conduct using computer services or devices, and the unlawful use of a two-way communications device.

The federal cases are being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Kelly S. Karase and Ashley Washington.

These cases are brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

Updated March 4, 2020

Project Safe Childhood