LIBERTY TOWNSHIP, Ohio – Major League Baseball umpire Brian O’Nora was one of 14 men arrested in Ohio over the weekend in a human trafficking sting.
According to a press release, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said several agencies assisted in the arrests of the men Sunday during an operation that targeted individuals seeking to purchase sex via the internet.
“John stings deter those seeking to purchase sex – reducing the demand for human trafficking – and serve as a reminder that these crimes are more prevalent and closer to home than you may think,” Yost said in the news release. “Hats off to Chief Meloro and the Liberty Township Police Department on their successful operation.”
Fourteen men were arrested during a single-day #HumanTrafficking operation that targeted individuals seeking to buy sex via the internet, AG Yost and Liberty Township Police Chief Toby Meloro announced today. pic.twitter.com/r1QSXwyDBZ
— Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost (@OhioAG) December 7, 2020
O’Nora, 57, of Youngstown, and the 13 other men were arrested in Liberty Township and have been charged with soliciting, a third-degree misdemeanor, and possessing criminal tools, a first-degree misdemeanor, Yost announced in the press release.
According to the Mahoning Valley Human Trafficking Task Force, who worked alongside the Mahoning Valley Law Enforcement Task Force and the Liberty Township Police Department, the men were arrested when they arrived at a local hotel to pay for sex.
TMZ Sports was the first to link the MLB umpire to the arrest.
According to MLB’s umpires bio page, O’Nora joined the league in 1999. Over his 23-year career, he has worked multiple division playoff series, several All-Star games — including the 2019 All-Star Game in Cleveland, the 2008 American League Championship Series, and the 2012 World Series.
According to TMZ Sports and USA Today, MLB has declined to comment on O’Nora’s arrest.