U.S. Marshals have arrested 13 sex offenders in Iowa, claiming they were some of the most wanted people in the state.
Seven of the 13 people arrested had been convicted of crimes against children younger than 13, Marshals said Friday. All 13 had avoided registering as sex offenders in Iowa.
The Marshals sent three cases to federal prosecutors in Iowa for possible criminal charges.
There are more than 6,500 registered sex offenders in Iowa, and 49 remain on Iowa’s most wanted list.
The Marshals did not identify any of the arrested sex offenders. They said the operation, dubbed Operation Most Wanted, was a partnership between Iowa state police and the Marshals and also resulted in the seizure of two guns, ammunition and unspecified drugs.
“The relationship between the United States Marshals Service and the Iowa Department of Public Safety’s Sex Offender Registry is an invaluable one,” Iowa DPS agent J. Hunter Bellon said. “The work these individuals put in on a daily basis along with the support of our communities, truly makes Iowa a safer place.”