November 9, 2022
MANILA – United States Homeland Security investigators arrested a Hickory, North Carolina man behind a child sex trafficking ring operating all the way from Charlotte to the Philippines.
Robert Parker, a 75-year-old retiree from Hickory, North Carolina was arrested in a new international crackdown on child sex trafficking. He is facing charges of sexual exploitation of a minor as well as possible additional charges.
Parker allegedly flew regularly from Charlotte to the Philippines and worked with a woman “arranger” to purchase young girls for sex, according to the lead HSI investigator.
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children alerted law enforcers to Parker’s home where investigators allegedly found thousands of offensive pictures. Parker also allegedly traded photos with other predators of children being abused in the US and internationally.
Mike Prado, the Deputy Special Agent In charge of Homeland Security Investigations, told WCNC News that agents from the Charlotte area are now stationed in the Philippines to combat the growing problem of international child sex tourism and trafficking.
“This individual is a sex trafficker taking disadvantaged poverty-stricken children in the Philippines and subjecting them to horrible acts of sex abuse by predators, the majority of which come from the US,” Prado said.
HSI agents stationed in the Philippines have made 298 arrests this year, up from 246 in 2021, according to the WCNC report.