He said that in 16 of the cases, he had no jurisdiction, since neither the suspects nor the decoys were in the county during the online chats.

As for the rest of the cases, he said neither police nor NBC could guarantee the chat logs were authentic and complete.

I am sympathetic to that argument, and, indeed, I find the actions of the men featured in the program disturbing.

Dateline sex chat-5

Some of the men run; others, many of whom believe Hansen is law enforcement, accept his request for a conversation, which is recorded on hidden cameras.

In this most recent installment of the series, they are arrested soon afterward.

However, the transcripts show that once the hook is baited, the fish jump and run with it like you wouldn't believe," he writes. Phillips says it's not entrapment because it seems to him the men have done this before. It seems to me that "Dateline" is indeed entrapping the men by having the decoys, at least some of the time, bring up the subject of sex and later invite the men to the house for a sexual encounter.

I don't necessarily object to this method in extreme cases such as this.

A sting in which police teamed up with "Dateline NBC" to catch online pedophiles was supposed to send a flinty-eyed, Texas-style warning about this Dallas suburb: Don't mess with Murphy. One of the 25 men caught in the sting — a prosecutor from a neighboring county — committed suicide when police came to arrest him.

The Murphy city manager who approved the operation lost his job in the ensuing furor.

Some other suspects contacted Perverted Justice decoys online but never showed up at the house.

Among them was Louis Conradt Jr., an assistant prosecutor from neighboring Kauffman County, who allegedly engaged in a sexually explicit online chat with an adult posing as a 13-year-old boy.

In each installment, dozens of men eventually show up at the address provided by the decoys, presumably for a sexual encounter.

They enter the house, encouraged by an unseen and high-voiced decoy, and are soon confronted by "Dateline" correspondent Chris Hansen.

Bryan Whorton, who lives with his wife and baby across the street from the house, said his neighborhood was put in danger. NBC's Hansen said Murphy is the only place the show has encountered such resistance.