Supreme Court rejects Backpage appeal to keep sex trafficking records private

Backpage granted temporary stay from Supreme Court
Backpage CEO Carl Ferrer

Yesterday, the Supreme Court refused to block a Senate subpoena that had requested Backpage turn over its internal records regarding its alleged role in online prostitution and sex trafficking. In case you haven’t been following the story, back in August, a federal judge gave Backpage ten days to turn over its records to the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations. The subcommittee has been investigating Backpage for some time and has been attempting to get these records for almost a year. Backpage was given a stay after that ruling, but soon afterwards the stay was lifted. This prompted Backpage to appeal to the Supreme Court, which as I mentioned refused to block the subpoena. The Supreme Court’s ruling makes Backpage’s deadline to turn over records right about…now.

While Backpage has seem to run out of their judicial bag of tricks they still seem to be hemming and hawing about turning over the records

“The volume of documents and data required to be processed, reviewed, redacted and logged renders production of every last responsive document and complete privilege logs by September 13, 2016 impossible regardless of best efforts,” the company’s lawyers said, adding that they hoped the tens of thousands of pages they were producing would be evidence of good faith.

My main concern is when it comes to Ferrer himself. If any legislative action is handed down I’m afraid he’ll just head back to The Netherlands where Backpage’s parent company is located, and where Ferrer helps run other sex sites that are even less subtle than Backpage. However, this now oft-repeated quote continues to make my day…

Backpage lawyer Liz McDougall declined to comment.

As always though, you shouldn’t count out Backpage just yet. They have more lives than the proverbial cat, and if history is any indicator, greed is a powerful motivator for evil to survive.

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