By WCCO-TV Staff

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Four men from around the Twin Cities face prostitution charges after police conducted a sex trafficking sting in late October.

Yixuan Gong, 21, Adam Caruso, 27, Doua Vang, 29, and Elder Morales Elvira, 27 all face one count of hiring an individual between the ages of 13 and 16. Morales Elvira faces an additional charge of describing sexual conduct with a child over electronic communication. The prostitution charge carries a maximum 10 year sentence, if the defendant is convicted.

Court documents say an undercover sex trafficking task force comprised of metro area agencies placed ads on websites offering prostitution services.

Within the next day, the four men separately contacted undercover officers who were posing as 15-year-old girls, charges say.

The officers told each man they were 15 years old, but the accused all set up in-person meetings. When they pulled into their agreed-upon locations, they were taken into custody.

According to the Bloomington Police Department, 18 people have been submitted for charging in connection to the 2-day long operation. In all, 20 to 25 officers from around the metro worked on the detail, targeting people looking to purchase sex from minors. Officers were also looking for possible traffickers, police say.