Earlier today, Backpage CEO Carl Ferrer was arrested on prostitution and child prostitution charges after departing a flight from Amsterdam at Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport. The warrant, out of the state of California, alleges that 99% of Baclkpage’s revenue comes from the money it makes off of prostitution ads. Along with Ferrer’s arrest, the offices of Backpage in Dallas were also raided and arrest warrants have been issued for Backpage shareholders Michael Lacey and James Larkin. They’re being charged with conspiracy to commit pimping.
While this is great news, and a long time coming, I have to wonder how this will affect the Senate investigation into Backpage? To date, Backpage has caught just about every legal lucky break in their controversial history. However, those were either for legislative or civil lawsuit issues. Will these criminal charges stick? I sure as hell hope they do but I wouldn’t be surprised if the charges were dismissed.
Currently, or at least as I’m typing this, Ferrer is being held on $500K bond. Considering he’s an obvious flight risk with all his wheeling and dealing in Amsterdam, one has to wonder if that bond is high enough. Since Fererr blew off a Congressional subpoena last year I have no doubt that he’s capable of ignoring any conditions of his bond if he is released.
As has been usual lately, Backpage attorney Liz McDougall has had no comment. When she has nothing to say, you know it has to be pretty bad for Backpage.