The following is a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Idaho.
BOISE – Acting U.S. Attorney Rafael M. Gonzalez, Jr. announced today that the Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force received an award totaling $344,963 from the Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP).
The Idaho ICAC Task Force is a statewide multi-disciplinary, multi-jurisdictional task force that detects, investigates, prosecutes, and engages in prevention activities involving technology-facilitated crimes against children. The task force is led by the Idaho Attorney General’s Office, which employs a unit of experienced investigators and forensic examiners that actively investigate ICAC cases throughout the state on a full-time basis.
“I am encouraged to see federal resources come to Idaho, resources that will be used to forge and to strengthen vital relationships, to share information and best practices, and to take our efforts to prevent and reduce child exploitation to a new level,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Gonzalez. “ICAC is a recognized leader dedicated to keeping our nation’s most sacred pledge and helping to fulfill our promise to ensure security and opportunity for our children. As everyone knows, this work is not easy, but our collective efforts – to protect children in need and at risk, to support juvenile victims, and to safeguard our young people from exploitation, abuse, and trafficking – have never been more urgent. I thank our state and local partners for all that they have done, and I look forward to working with each of them to further develop and execute our child safety strategy and to celebrate additional achievements.”
“ICAC is a partnership strengthened by support from local, state and federal resources,” Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said. “I thank our federal partners for continuing to recognize the need that exists in Idaho for a strong, well-equipped task force that targets those who prey on our children and grandchildren. Idaho’s young people will be safer as a result of this support and for that I am grateful.”
OJJDP grant funds will support program costs to include personnel, overtime for affiliate agencies, an officer wellness program, equipment, software, and mobile services for the task force’s activities. The task force will equip and train investigators in Internet investigations; equip and train forensic analysts of digital evidence; coordinate effective prosecution and training for law enforcement and prosecutors; recruit, train and equip new agencies to build statewide capacity to effectively investigate crimes and respond to requests from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and other partners; and provide public education regarding Internet safety and crime prevention techniques. The task force’s progress will be measured in terms of the number of investigations conducted, arrests made, investigators/prosecutors trained, agencies equipped, presentations conducted, and – most importantly – children rescued.
Anyone with information regarding the exploitation of children is encouraged to contact local police, the Attorney General’s ICAC Unit at 208-947-8700, or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-843-5678. Parents, educators and law enforcement officials can find more information and helpful resources at the ICAC website, ICACIdaho.org.
To learn more about OJJDP, please visit ojjdp.ojp.gov/about. For additional information about the OJJDP’s Fiscal Year 2021 Strengthening ICAC Technological Investigative Capacity funding, please visit ojjdp.ojp.gov/funding/opportunities/o-ojjdp-2021-121002.