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A Lehigh man is one of 12 arrested following child predator sting investigation

Posted at 4:16 PM, Jun 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-17 16:34:14-04

LEHIGH ACRES, Fla.  — One of 12 suspects arrested in a sting operation by detectives to find sexual predators was a 43-year-old Lehigh Acres man.

On June 2, 2022, Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Auburndale Police Department, and Winter Haven Police department worked together on “Operation Child Protector II” where detectives went undercover as children on social media platforms and dating apps to find sexual predators surfing the internet.

According to the report, Johnny Hughley of 29th St SW in Lehigh Acres is accused of initiating a sexually inappropriate conversation with a detective posing as a 14-year-old girl. He would tell her he liked young girls, ask what sexual things he could do to her (that include having sex with two men at once), send a nude photo, and also ask if she had any friends her age that would have sex with him.

Since 2003, Hughley has had a criminal history in Lee County for charges of battery and drug sales.

The detectives got the warrant for his arrest and he was charged with, one count of a two-way communication device to commit a felony, and one count of transmission of material harmful to a minor.

During this investigation, the suspects involved communicated with who they thought were children online and four other suspects went to meet the "children" at an undercover location in Polk County.

According to the report, detectives obtained 8 warrants of arrest for the 8 other suspects.

The additional suspects were charged with a warrant for transmitting pornographic images or grooming/ soliciting children online.

The total arrests made are for 12 suspects who are facing 49 felony charges — with the youngest suspect age 20 years old, and the oldest at 67.

The Polk County Sheriff Judd Grady talked about the arrests made in a presser on Friday morning.