Four arrested on charges of online solicitation of minor via multi-agency sting operation

From top left clockwise, Jesse Bennett Mason, James Monte Montgomery, Jordan Rook and Michael...
From top left clockwise, Jesse Bennett Mason, James Monte Montgomery, Jordan Rook and Michael David Bylsma were all arrested between Wednesday and Thursday via a multi-agency sting operation targeting suspects allegedly soliciting minors online.(Gregg County Jail)
Updated: Jun. 4, 2021 at 10:09 AM CDT
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - A multi-agency operation resulted in numerous arrests across several counties, all relating to charges of online solicitation of a minor. Among those arrested include Athens Mayor James Monte Montgomery.

Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Criminal Investigations Division, in conjunction with Longview Police Department, Gregg County Sheriff’s Office, Smith County Sheriff’s Office, Collin County Sheriff’s Office, FBI, and HSI, arrested multiple suspects for online solicitation of a minor charges during an operation Wednesday and Thursday. The suspects were arrested when they arrived at an undisclosed location after soliciting sex online with investigators posing as minors.

The officers arrested the following persons:

Jesse Bennett Mason of Hallsville

James Monte Montgomery of Athens

Jordyn Rook of Longview

Michael David Bylsma of White Oak

All were booked into the Gregg County Jail.

Mason was also charged with possession of child pornography and possession of child pornography with intent to distribute.

Solicitation of a minor involves a defendant asking or engaging in a conversation with a minor and during the course of that conversation, the defendant asks (or solicits) the minor to meet them for the purpose of engaging in a sexual act.  Online Solicitation of a Minor under Texas Penal Code Section 33.021 is a felony of the second degree.  Second-degree felonies are punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Related story:

Athens mayor arrested Thursday for online solicitation of minor

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