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5 Men Arrested for Child Solicitation in Multi-Agency Operation

May 11, 2021, 9:49 AM HST
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A multi-agency undercover investigation to catch online child predators conducted last week yielded five arrests.

Operation Keiki Shield East Hawai‘i was conducted between Thursday, May 6, and Saturday, May 8. The operation was conducted by members of Hawai‘i Police Department’s Criminal Investigation Division, US Department of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), along with special agents from the Department of the Attorney General – Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, the United States Secret Service, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The multi-agency collaborative operation focused on targeting individuals who solicit children for sexual acts electronically.

“The people of Hawai‘i, and most especially our children, are safer when state law enforcement agencies partner with our county and federal counterparts,” said Attorney General Clare E. Connors. “The Department of the Attorney General’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force is such a partnership, and this joint operation demonstrates our continued commitment to identifying and prosecuting child predators in our communities by working together.”

Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent in Charge John F. Tobon said HSI Honolulu is committed to arresting and prosecuting those who commit crimes against children.

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“We are happy to work with our partners at the Hawai‘i Police Department state level by providing the necessary resources to not only get these predators off the streets but most importantly provide assistance to the victims,” Tobon said.

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Marshall K. Baji, 31, of Nā‘ālehu, is facing the most offenses out of the five arrested. He has been charged with first-degree electronic enticement of a child, promoting pornography for minors, promoting minor-produced sexual images, third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug, promotion of a detrimental drug, prohibited acts related to drug paraphernalia, place to keep ammunition, loaded firearm on the highway and permit to acquire and registration mandatory.

Baji was released on his own recognizance.

Also arrested were Nolan O. Tallet, 45, of Hilo, Sonny Eugenio Puerto, 28, of Kurtistown, Kanani Ikaika Perreira-Yurong, 31, of Hilo, and Joseph Michael Powell, 36, of Hilo. The four men were charged with first-degree electronic enticement of a child and each had a bail of $50,000.

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Hawai‘i Police Department would like to remind parents to monitor the use of their children’s mobile applications.

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