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One more man arrested in Pinellas child predator investigation

CLEARWATER — Police arrested one more suspect Monday a week after 35 men were arrested during a four-day child predator investigation in Pinellas County.

Michael Paul Paine, 43, faces charges of traveling to meet a minor, seduction of a minor via the Internet and two counts of transmission of material harmful to a minor.

Last week, the Clearwater Police Department and Pinellas County Sheriff's Office announced the results of their four-day undercover sting, "Operation Home Alone," that took place Jan. 23-27.

But after the sting was over, police said Paine, of Sarasota, remained in contact with an undercover detective who was posing as a 15-year-old girl.

On Monday, he drove to Clearwater to meet her, police said. Instead, he was arrested.

"Even with all of the media attention on our operation a week ago, this suspect still pursued what he thought was a 15-year-old girl," said Clearwater police Chief Anthony Holloway. "He didn't give up. That shows how desperate some of these predators are."

Paine was booked into the Pinellas County jail, where he remained Monday afternoon in lieu of $25,000 bail.

One more man arrested in Pinellas child predator investigation 02/03/14 [Last modified: Monday, February 3, 2014 3:55pm]
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