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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    10,557

    Craigslist is hub for child prostitution--say trafficked women

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology...on-allegations

    Craigslist is hub for child prostitution, allege trafficked women

    Open letter to founder Craig Newmark in Washington Post tells stories of young women sold for sex through 'adult services' ads



    ".....All day, me and other girls sat with our laptops, pasting pictures and answering ads on Craigslist, he made $1,500 a night selling my body, dragging me to Los Angeles, Houston, Little Rock – and on one trip to Las Vegas in the trunk of a car," the ad said. "Craig we write this letter so you will know from our personal experiences how Craigslist makes horrific acts like this so easy to carry out … and the men who arrange them very rich."

    The second woman, identified as AK, said that last year she met a man twice her age who pretended to be her boyfriend. "He put my picture on Craigslist, and I was sold for sex by the hour at truck stops and cheap motels, 10 hours with 10 different men every night. This became my life," the ad said. "Men answered the Craigslist advertisements and paid to rape me. The $30,000 he pocketed each month was facilitated by Craigslist 300 times."

    more at link

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Maryland
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    I don't understand why Craig Newmark has been able to get away with this. How is this not illegal? I know I am missing some salient point because I don't understand why LE can't just shut it down. Craig Newmark should be in jail. IMO

    ETA: I've never been to the site, but have read numerous times about this problem.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Florida
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    2,380
    The thing is they just will find somewhere else to go.I know here they bust girls off of a local,adult version of Craig's.Also they post in other areas of Craig's(esp.since they started charging to post adult ads).I made the mistake of looking in 'Therapeutic Services' looking for LEGIT spa services.........it was all sex ads! They also pop up in 'Beauty Services' etc
    Personally I can't blame Craig's even more than I can blame our local papers who have 'massage'ads in their classified section.
    I am against any type of human trafficking and child prostitution but I just can't blame CL as a whole.
    The saints are the sinners who keep trying...

  4. #4
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    Apr 2010
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    Maryland
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    I could be wrong, but it seems to me that Craig's List openly facilitates prostitution and is more than aware that children are being trafficked. Rather than work with LE, they fight it tooth and nail. I feel they need to take a much more proactive stance regarding trafficking. Again, this is from a perspective of things I have read as I have no experience with the site.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    10,557
    I have very mixed feelings. Our family has used Craigslist successfully to rent out our rental houses and to buy and sell cars and tractors. Never, ever had a problem. After the Craigslist murder, the adult services section did slow down but now it's back up to speed. I honestly didn't even know an adult services section existed before our daughter went missing!!

    On a positive note, I actually learned of the Polaris Project via Craigslist. I was very pleased that they run a list of support services for the prostitutes. I'm unsure if many young prostitutes read it, however, as they seldom have access to the computers. I know that Craig makes the argument that his list makes it easier for LE to find the illegal activity but everyone would have to agree that he does provide the forum. I have a feeling, though, that if Craigslist didn't allow the ads, someone would--newspapers, the phone book, other sites. And remember, there are literally thousands of ads of myredbook--with links to every city in the country (actually, the world).

    I think the most important thing to do right now is to check your state laws and see what the penalties are. They have been notoriously low and many people have turned from drug sales to pimping due to the light sentences. Oregon and California are currently working to enact stronger laws. I believe Ohio is too. I'd write to your legislators and let them know that this is important to you. Also, check the prostitutes who are advertised on your local Craigslist. Look at those faces. Those are real young people who are loved by someone. I've been told that most only turn tricks for about 3-4 years and then they are retired--usually due to illness or burn-out. Even though many are prevented from access to drugs and alcohol while they are working (as pimps don't want the extra charges), as they retire, many become addicted. Sadly, there are very very few services available for those wanting out.

    It is a documented fact that pimps are trolling for young teens--both male and female. They prey on any teen who is the least bit vulnerable. The kids who are trafficked come from all walks of life. It is no longer just the cute 16 year old with low self-esteem living in her 5th foster family. They are going after girls and boys who are anxious for attention, angry at their parents' rules, struggling with mental illness or disabilities. Many live in their families of origin and come from all income levels. I was shocked to see that it is not simply the trim and attractive boys and girls. The pimps are an equal opportunity employer!! There is a john for young people with every skin color, size, and body type. The johns couldn't care less about the prostitutes level of intelligence.

    The procurers befriend the kids and work them up a tier into actually prostituting. They break down their natural barriers and buy them cell phones, laptops, sexy clothing, CDs, jewelry. They lavish them with attention and "things", separate them from their parents and friends and go in for the kill.

    Sounds like a predatory pedophile, doesn't it? It is.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    10,557
    I cannot recommend this organization strongly enough. They were responsive, supportive and sensitive to our needs. They take every call very seriously and are spot on concerning keeping you in the loop or simply taking down anonymous reports. Keep there number handy!!

    Their website is quite meaty and covers all sorts of trafficking issues for both US citizens and the foreign born. There's a daily news report, a blog, information about education, services, etc. Really fine group!!


    http://www.polarisproject.org/content/view/90/95/

    National Human Trafficking Hotline

    What is the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC)?

    "The NHTRC is a national, 24-hour, toll-free, anti-trafficking hotline operated and implemented by Polaris Project and funded by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The NHTRC works to improve the national response to protect victims of human trafficking in the U.S.

    The NHTRC maintains a national database of anti-trafficking agencies as well as a library of available anti-trafficking resources and materials. The NHTRC also works in collaboration with the anti-trafficking movement in the United States, which includes: HHS Rescue and Restore Coalitions, DOJ-funded Human Trafficking Task Forces, FBI Innocence Lost Task forces, Federal victims' services and outreach grantees, statewide human trafficking task forces, community-based initiatives, and on-going research projects.

    NHTRC Hotline Services: Call 1-888-3737-888 to report a tip; to connect with anti-trafficking services in your area; or to request training and technical assistance, general information, or specific anti-trafficking resources."

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    10,557
    Another excellent site. GEMS is a model program which should be available to all those wishing to pick up the pieces:

    http://www.gems-girls.org/

    "Girls Educational and Mentoring Services’ (GEMS) mission is to empower young women, ages 12-21, who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking to exit the commercial sex industry and develop to their full potential."

    Make sure you watch the short trailer for the film, "Very Young Girls". You won't forget it. I love the comment "They are all our daughters."

    http://www.gems-girls.org/get-involved/very-young-girls

    Watch the eyes of the beautiful young black girl in the pink top who is being spoken to by the caseworker. Can you see how she's wavering? Can you see the hidden pain? She wants help but she's afraid. She's been lied to. She's teetering on the edge. That young woman looks remarkably like my daughter. I've seen those same eyes. Just watching that trailer and the full exposé (available from Netflix) rips my heart out.

    Lots of great info and links on this site. Please bookmark it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    10,176
    why would he want to block a criminal investigation? why not let them investigate & clear him? is it that he, being a corporation now, values money over humanity? (rhetorical & slightly sarcastic)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    10,557
    Natal--I think Belinda was gracious enough to say that she doesn't have experience with Craigslist but doesn't like what she'd read. Belinda has passion about the safety of children and I heartily admire that. Please let's try to be kind on WS.

    I do have experience with Craigslist--both extremely positive and extremely negative and I stated that I have mixed feelings. I wanted to believe that Mr. Newmark could make some changes but he's half-hearted about it. The adult services section is fully back up to the level it was before the terrible murder by Markoff.

    That said, I happen to think that Craig Newmark's multi-million dollar dynasty is going to come crumbling down around him is he turns away from reporters asking about child prostitution--a volatile and pertinent question as we see here everyday. He started an incredibly wonderful and quirky forum for commerce. He has resisted change as it's his ballgame. All that is fine as it's free and fun for most of us. If we don't like the rules, we can go elsewhere. I happen to love being able to see what apts. might be renting for right now in Toulouse or if there are any vintage 1940's trailers in Austin. I also use Craigslist to look for recycled building products and even the occasional video game. The fact is, like so many other wonderful technologies, the bad people are ruining it for the rest of us.

    Pimps, traffickers AND Craig Newmark are laughing all the way to the bank and I'm afraid the tide is going to turn against him very soon. My hat is off to the two young women brave enough to plead with him to put a stop to this madness. Just speaking out publicly is a step toward healing.



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