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Former Schwarzenegger advisor arrested in statewide human trafficking operation

Former Schwarzenegger advisor arrested in statewide human trafficking operation
Daniel Pellisier, a former advisor to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, was arrested by the Citrus Heights Police Department as part of a human trafficking crackdown. (Citrus Heights Police Department)

A man who once advised former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was one of four alleged "johns" arrested by police in Citrus Heights, Calif., as part of a statewide human trafficking crackdown.

Daniel Pellisier was arrested by the Citrus Heights Police Department, in Sacramento County, as part of Operation Reclaim and Rebuild, a three-day sweep led by the Los Angeles County Regional Human Trafficking Task Force. The crackdown led to more than 500 arrests, including 30 suspected traffickers and 178 alleged "johns."

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Pellisier, 57, served as deputy secretary for energy and environment, where he advised Schwarzenegger and oversaw California's Natural Resources and Environmental Protection agencies, according to a biography on UC Berkeley's Institute of Government Studies. He later became president of an advocacy group called California Pension Reform.

Citrus Heights police used the internet and other tactics, including undercover operations, to make 10 arrests. The arrests were for prostitution and probation violations, as well as felony and misdemeanor warrant arrests, the Police Department said in a statement.

"Our efforts were focused on identifying and arresting the 'pimps' (those who were coordinating the services of victims) and 'johns' (those seeking to take advantage of those victims) and rescuing the victims of human trafficking," police said. "The city of Citrus Heights and the community of Citrus Heights do not tolerate human trafficking and will continue to detect, deter, and hold those accountable for their involvement in prostitution and victimizing others."

Other arrested "johns" included 39-year-old Hamel Yan of Elk Grove; 19-year-old Darrick Chavis of Vacaville; and 42-year-old Steven Birdsong of Antelope.

Twitter: @Brittny_Mejia

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