HAMILTON (Mercer) — An investigation by the Internet Crimes Against Children Unit within the Mercer County Prosecutor's Office has resulted in the arrest of a township man who allegedly attempted to pick up a girl that he believed to be 15 years old.

Francis Frobose, 26, is charged with attempted kidnapping, attempted luring, attempted sexual assault, and attempted endangering the welfare of a child.

Frobose was taken into custody without incident on Oct. 28 in a sting operation. Authorities followed Frobose from his home to a location where Frobose intended to meet a girl he had been chatting with online, authorities said.

But he was never actually chatting with a minor. In reality, more than 100 messages had been exchanged between Frobose and ICAC detectives, the prosecutor's office said. During the chat, Frobose described sexual acts that were to be committed, and set up a meet.

"I want the residents of Mercer County to know we are out there online, protecting our children," Prosecutor Angelo Onofri said. "This year alone, the ICAC Task Force has conducted 180 investigations into child pornography, child exploitation and luring minors to engage in illicit sexual activity."

Twenty-nine people have been charged this year, Onofri added, with more than 100,000 child pornography images and videos recovered.

Individuals with information related to these types of crimes are asked to contact the ICAC at 609-989-6568 or the New Jersey Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force tip line at 888-648-6007.

Contact reporter Dino Flammia at dino.flammia@townsquaremedia.com.

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