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Thu Jul 13, 2017, 07:56 PM

Members of Congress press Sessions to investigate sexual ads at Backpage.com

Source: Washington Post

Members of Congress press Sessions to investigate sexual ads at Backpage.com

By Jonathan O'Connell and Tom Jackman July 13 at 4:57 PM

Five members of Congress who head anti-human-trafficking groups called on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to launch a criminal investigation of Backpage.com after a trove of documents revealed that the website hired a company in the Philippines to lure advertisers and customers seeking sex.

Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), who lead a subcommittee that has investigated Backpage since 2015, along with Sen. Thomas R. Carper (D-Del.) and Reps. Ann Wagner (R-Mo.) and Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) demanded on Thursday that the Justice Department examine the classifieds site after information about the documents was reported by The Washington Post this week.

Wagner and Maloney, co-chairs of a House task force on human trafficking, accused Backpage of “knowingly advertising and financially benefiting from participation in sex trafficking.”

“Backpage.com has long argued that it is a mere third-party platform with no responsibility for the sex trafficking ads that are posted on its website,” the congresswomen wrote in a letter to Sessions. “This is an utter lie.”

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Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/congresswomen-press-sessions-to-investigate-sexual-ads-at-backpagecom/2017/07/13/99ebaed8-6752-11e7-9928-22d00a47778f_story.html

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