DeliverFund: The Untold Story of Backpage’s Worst Nightmare

“The sad truth is that it’s happening in every city in America.”

The above quote comes from Kara Smith, a senior targeting analyst with DeliverFund, an organization dedicated to busting sex trafficking operations across the country and, as it happens, Backpage’s biggest nightmare.

The group, comprised of former CIA, NSA, special forces, and various police agencies, exists with the express purpose of collaborating with law enforcement to bring down bad-faith operators like Backpage.

Indeed, it was DeliverFund which provided intel to assist the takedown of Backpage, which (as readers will know) had until last year become the top place to advertise sex for hire—both by willing sex workers and by pimps trafficking victims. (In fact, in a fitting coup de grâce after helping the feds take down the Backpage criminal syndicate, DeliverFund moved its headquarters into the former Backpage office in Dallas. That had to sting Tony Ortega a little bit, whose current offices are located in the basement of the home his wife’s money pays for. Ouch!

Human trafficking of the sort Tony Ortega defended on his boss’s behalf is a gruesome business and combating it is a daunting task. This is especially true given, as Backpage demonstrated, how rapidly it can spread online. But DeliverFund, created back in 2014 in a direct attempt to combat Backpage, is animated with a spirit of optimism, based on their winning track record.

Initially working with a skeleton crew of just three people (and a limited budget) DeliverFund was nonetheless able to produce intelligence that led to the arrest of four pimps. This early success inspired them to begin staffing up in 2018 to take on Backpage itself.

The seizure and shutdown of Backpage by the FBI in the spring of 2018, could have been seen as the successful resolution of their mission. Instead, DeliverFund once more broadened its scope to take on the multi-headed hydra of emulators the death of Backpage has given rise to.

So far in the first nine months of 2019, DeliverFund has contributed to the arrests of 25 traffickers and 64 purchasers of underage sex rescuing over 50 victims in the process.

With the trial of Backpage’s kingpins, Michael Lacey and James Larkin, fast approaching any and all complicit in the Backpage pimp conspiracy have good reason to be scared with DeliverFund on their trail. Very scared. Stay tuned!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Comments are closed.