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Indictment levels new charges against Backpage.com officials

Posted: 1:39 PM, Jul 27, 2018
Updated: 2018-07-27 19:39:27Z

A new indictment in Arizona against operators of Backpage.com alleges the classified ad site gave free ads to prostitutes in a bid to get their future business.

The indictment filed Wednesday repeats allegations in an initial round of charges and adds six new money laundering charges against founder Mike Lacey and 50 charges of facilitating prostitution against chief financial officer John Brunst.
    
A total of seven people were charged in an indictment in late March alleging the site ignored warnings to stop running prostitution ads, sometimes involving children.
    
Defense attorneys say Lacey and Brunst are innocent.
    
Backpage.com is a Dutch-owned limited liability corporation. Its principal place of business is in Dallas and federal officials say it keeps its bank accounts and servers in Arizona.