Backpage raided, CEO arrested on sex trafficking charges

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State agents raided the Dallas headquarters of adult classified ad portal Backpage and arrested Chief Executive Officer Carl Ferrer on Thursday following allegations that adult and child sex-trafficking victims had been forced into prostitution through escort ads posted on the site.

Ferrer, 55, was arrested on a California warrant after arriving at Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport on a flight from Amsterdam, said Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. In a statement, Paxton said agents from his Law Enforcement Unit participated in a search of Backpage headquarters and Ferrer’s arrest.

“Making money off the backs of innocent human beings by allowing them to be exploited for modern-day slavery is not acceptable in Texas. I intend to use every resource my office has to make sure those who profit from the exploitation and trafficking of persons are held accountable to the fullest extent of the law,” Paxton, a Republican, said in a statement.

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