BOISE, Idaho – Authorities arrested several people this past weekend in northern Idaho in a joint-agency operation to fight child sexual abuse.

The project, titled "Operation Lonely Heart," was a cooperative effort between federal, state and local agencies, according to Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden. The Department of Homeland Security led the operation with assistance from the Attorney General’s Internet Crimes Against Children unit.

In all, five people were arrested – two from the Gem State:

 Thomas R. Cartwright, 54, of Post Falls
 Richard Peterson, 24, of Rathdrum

And three from Washington:

 Tyrel M. Clark, 37, of Spokane
 Kilian J. Hoyne, 20, of Spokane Valley
 Carl E. Ness, 54, of Spokane

All were arrested and booked into the Kootenai County Jail on charges of enticing a child through the use of the internet or other communication device, Wasden said.

More than 60 police officers, investigators and federal agents were part of the operation.

“It’s a sad reality that this type of crime exists,” Wasden said in a news release on Monday. “But thanks to law enforcement’s cooperative efforts, we are able to push back against sexual predators who wish to victimize young people. Children in the region are safer today as a result of Operation Lonely Heart.”

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