Agents of the West Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force charged dozens with the solicitation of prostitution during an undercover operation earlier this month, court records show.

Case files indicate that 26 men were charged with solicitation between January 10th and 12th.

A spokeswoman for the Tuscaloosa Police Department said the operation was a part of the 18th National Johns Suppression Initiative, during which dozens of law enforcement agencies across the U.S. conduct stings and arrest the "johns" trying to pay for sex rather than targeting prostitutes themselves, who are often victims of exploitation and abuse. More than 9,000 sex-buyers have been arrested during these operations since they began in 2011.

In Tuscaloosa, undercover officers placed ads on "escort" websites and met with suspects in an area hotel room. The accused johns were captured on video and audio surveillance offering cash for sex acts and arrested soon after.

The 26 suspects whose cases appear in court records include Saleh Alshunaif, Samuel Dewitt Burkes, Donell Colvin, Jonathan Neil Davis, Jeremy Terran Dixon, Timothy Hollie, Jr., Jacob Roy Garrett Johnson, Stanford Lorenzo Kelly II, James Matthew Miller, Auren Stanford Mitchell, Jacquez Tyreek Mccoy, Jason Maurice Hall Morris, Danny Deandre Scott, Marvin Lesere Turner Jr., Donche Marquavious Vinson, Jamarvin Antwon Sealey Wells, Demirus Lamont White, Ronald Gene Reaves, Timothy Francis Scott, Chester Leon Whitley III, Jeffery Neal Williams and Kevin Wayne Simpson.

In Alabama, solicitation of prostitution is a Class A Misdemeanor and punishable by up to a year in jail, fines of up to $6,000 or both. Most of the suspects arrested in the Tuscaloosa operation were booked in the Tuscaloosa County Jail on a $1,000 bond.

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