Sales director for Backpage.com pleads guilty

PHOENIX - The sales and marketing director of Backpage.com pleaded guilty to conspiring to facilitate prostitution in a scheme to give free ads to prostitutes in a bid to draw them away from competitors.

The plea Friday by Dan Hyer marked the second Backpage.com employee to plead guilty in cases in Arizona in which the site is accused of ignoring warnings to stop running prostitution ads.
    
In all, six others affiliated with Backpage.com face charges in the case.
    
As part of the plea, prosecutors will dismiss 67 other charges against Hyer.
    
Hyer faces up to five years in prison.
    
Backpage.com is a Dutch-owned limited liability corporation.
    
Its principal place of business is in Dallas, and officials say it kept its bank accounts and servers in Arizona.
 

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