Child Predators Led Away In “Operation Bad Apple”

( Last Monday, the Osceola County, Florida Sheriff’s Office announced it made 56 arrests as part of its “Operation Bad Apple” targeting sexual offenders and sexual predators in the county.

Working in conjunction with US Marshal Service, the Sheriff’s Office’s “Operation Bad Apple” took place between March 28 and June 10. Its primary focus was sexual offenders and sexual predators with prior state or federal convictions related to child pornography.

The 56 arrests were those who violated statutory sex offense restrictions and/or committed additional violations.

Watch a local news report on the operation HERE.

According to the Justice Department, federal law defines child pornography as “any visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct” involving those under the age of 18.

The expansion of the Internet coupled with digital technology has led to an explosion in the market for child porn with images available through social media sites, file-sharing and photo-sharing sites, and even gaming devices and smartphone apps.

In late May, a Florida professor from Saint Leo University was charged with two counts of Intentional Viewing of Child Pornography and ten counts of Possession of Child Pornography.

English professor and published author Steven Kistulentz, 55, was initially arrested by the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office for intentionally viewing child pornography. But after conducting forensic analysis on his cellphone, he was also charged for each of the ten images of child porn analysts found on his device.

Kistulentz admitted to detectives that he created a Kik account to send and receive files containing child porn.

He was remanded to Pinellas County Jail on $220,000 bail.