3 men from Wisconsin among 14 arrested in human trafficking operation in Illinois
LAKE COUNTY, Ill. — Three men from Wisconsin were among 14 people arrested in a human trafficking bust in Lake County, Illinois in January.
Lake County sheriff’s officials announced the arrest on Wednesday, Feb. 5. This, after the LCSO’s “Special Investigations Group” conducted a multi-day operation “to suppress the demand for purchased sex.”
The three men arrested who are from Wisconsin were identified by sheriff’s officials as Gregory Pahl, 53, of Twin Lakes, Roger Jimdar, 31, of Kenosha, and Sean O’Reilly, 43, of Greendale.
All 14 of the men were arrested at a hotel in Gurnee, Illinois.
The nationwide operation involved the LCSO and a coalition of law-enforcement agencies specifically targeting customers of prostitutes known as “Johns.” Many of the individuals who sell sex do not do so willingly, officials said, with a large number forced into involuntary servitude.
The web-based operation utilized classified advertising websites, regularly used as a medium for prostitution. When the “Johns” arrived and offered money to the undercover detectives for sexual acts, they were arrested and transported to the Lake County Jail.
Over the past nine years, this nationwide effort led to the arrests of more than 10,000 “Johns” and sex traffickers.
The others arrested were identified by the sheriff’s office as follows:
- Salvador Vicario, 61, of North Chicago
- Carlos Reyes-Velez, 36, of Beach Park
- Mark Volpe, 62, of Highwood
- Steven Wilt, 62, of Gurnee
- Pedro Mendez-Gonzalez, 51, of Waukegan
- Timothy Christian, 37, of Waukegan
- Gustavo Cornelio-Garcia, 25, ofZion
- John Powell, 38, of Waukegan
- Jay Sawyer, 58, of Glenview
- Kyle Macgibbon, 59, of Libertyville
- Gregory Mason, 53, of Spring Grove
All of the individuals arrested were charged with one count of solicitation of a sexual act (Class A misdemeanor).
“Human trafficking is a significant problem which exists everywhere, even right here in Lake County,” said Sheriff John Idleburg. “The Lake County Sheriff’s Office makes it a priority to do everything we can to suppress the demand of purchased sex.”