A Mableton man has been charged along with three others in a child sex sting led by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, authorities claim.

Rolando Hernandes, Mark Hanna, James Daniel Stinchcomb, and William Sage were arrested separately on charges of attempting to entice a minor to engage in sexual activity, according to a news release Thursday from the U.S. Department of Justice.

Hernandes, 30, of Mableton, was arraigned Dec. 5, the department said.

Hanna, 29, of Anaheim, California, was arraigned Dec. 10, while Stinchcomb, 34, of Bethlehem, Georgia, will be arraigned later this month, the news release stated, adding that Sage, 32, of Sandy Springs, will be arraigned on Dec. 18.

U.S. Attorney Byung Pak said federal and local law enforcement identified individuals targeting minors online for unlawful sex acts during the Thanksgiving holiday.

“Those who attempt to prey on children should know that they face arrest and jail when they seek to exploit the youngest members of our community,” Pak said.

Records in the case show undercover FBI agents communicated online with several men between Nov. 19 and Dec. 6, targeting adults seeking minors for sex.

This resulted in the arrests of Hernandes, Hanna, Stinchcomb and Sage, the justice department said.

On Nov. 19, Hernandes began communicating online with an undercover agent, believing he was talking to a 10-year-old girl, police said.

Hernandes told the girl over the next eight days what he wanted to do with her, agents claim.

When he traveled to Smyrna on Nov. 27 thinking he’d meet the girl, Cobb and FBI officers were waiting to arrest him, the justice department said.

The same thing happened to Sage, who thought he was communicating with an 11-year-old girl and traveled to Norcross in Gwinnett County on Nov. 25 to meet her, not realizing he had been set up, agents said.

Hanna’s arrest was much the same, according to the news release. He’d been chatting online with an undercover agent posing as an 11-year-old girl, who Hanna traveled to Norcross to meet on Dec. 4, when he was arrested instead.

Stinchcomb, a Gwinnett County employee, was arrested on Dec. 6 in Norcross where he traveled in his county work vehicle to meet an undercover agent posing as an 11-year-old girl, police claim.

“The FBI will always be vigilant in pursuing those who choose to prey on our most vulnerable citizens, our children,” said Chris Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “I would like to thank our law enforcement partners and their task force officers as part of the FBI’s Metro Atlanta Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking (MATCH) task force for their commitment to making these arrests.”

The cases are part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse, led by the United States Attorney’s Offices around the country.

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Vicki Henry

Think of this ‘crime creation’ as an assembly line. You start with a frame (of age chat site) where adults go to just socialize or meet someone they can get acquainted with and hopefully begin a relationship. Right? No crime there! The frame moves on down the line with parts (conversation & grooming) being added along the way. Now it’s time for the engine to be dropped in to get it ready to drive off the line. The bait has been put out and the switch occurs. It is known that many guys caught up in these stings are experiencing some depression from a break-up, divorce, loss, etc., so the engine is not clicking on all cylinders. They are vulnerable and the gasoline (testosterone) gets added at the next station. The brakes are being installed so that it can be operational when driven off the line. That is, of course, where the conversation should end but wait you can get the cool wheels, high performance and extra warranty at little cost (pot, liquor sex toys) if you add them to your contract.

The public is groomed to believe they are saving a child which we know is a farce and the public is NEVER told the details of how this occurs as they want to protect their operation.

Lastly, the assembly line crew turns the vehicle over to the sales team (prosecutors) who sprinkles some false statements in to the sales pitch. Again, the public never sees the sprinkles. The crime ends in a plea deal (97% federal and 95% state). A life and a family are destroyed. Bait = 18 and over chat site and switch = change the age.

Maybe we should suggest that the media do a deep-dive in a case by asking for the records and talking with the offender then write their story.

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