Backpage co-founder Michael Lacey is awaiting his trial on human trafficking and money laundering charges that is set to take place in 2020. Meanwhile, he’s free to go about his business while wearing an ankle monitor. I find that kind of ironic since I’m sure a number of Backpage’s victims probably had actual chains attached to their ankles, but I digress.
Lacey recently put in a request to the court for permission to have his ankle monitor removed so he can enjoy the beaches of Hawaii. Lacey claims the monitor should be removed for health reasons as he wishes to swim in Hawaii and the monitor would prevent that. Thankfully, the request was denied with a judge stating that Lacey can get all the exercise he wants by cycling, using a treadmill or other aerobic activities.
Do I think Lacey is a potential flight risk? Actually, no for a couple of reasons. For one, as the article linked above mentions, Lacey is not in the best of health and life abroad on the run would not be conducive to his well being. Second, and most importantly, I think both Lacey and Larkin have more than enough hubris to think that they can beat all the charges against them in court. While Backpage was at its height Larkin and Lacey continually beat their chests with the First Amendment while hiding behind the Communications Decency Act of 1996. It’s my opinion that they think since they’ve fought off charges like this before they can do it again. Rich white criminals have a tendency to think they can get away with anything.
Speaking of rich white criminals, do you think if someone who was poor or non-white had asked to have an ankle monitor removed that the thought would even be entertained by the court? They’d probably be lucky if they didn’t get locked up for contempt by wasting the court’s time. Meanwhile, this would be Lacey’s second trip to Hawaii in the past two months. I guess he’s free to move around the country unlike most of Backpage’s victims. Maybe Lacey should be compelled to travel by shipping container.