October 7, 2016
Backpage.com CEO Arrested Over Sex Trafficking Allegations
(San Francisco) — After a three-year criminal investigation, state prosecutors in California have brought criminal charges against the CEO, Carl Ferrer, and two owners of the website Backpage.com, alleging they were complicit in sex trafficking crimes.
The company also finds itself embattled in civil litigation brought by three minors who were trafficked for sex on the website when they were young teens in 2010. The girls are jointly represented by our law firm and Erik Bauer, a Tacoma attorney. Last year, the Washington State Supreme Court upheld a trial court’s order that the three girls could move forward with their allegations that Backpage knowingly created an online marketplace for sex trafficking and then helped traffickers create their ads for sex.
Carl Ferrer’s arrest comes on the heels of a Pierce County Superior Court judge ordering Mr. Ferrer to produce personal email records relating to his involvement with the website’s “Escort” section, which the plaintiffs allege is blatant online sex trafficking and prostitution.