Notified of Kidnapped Girl For Sale on Their Site, Backpage Does Nothing

Tony Ortega

Backpage’s deliberate attempt to feign ignorance concerning the wide range of sex crimes they were actively facilitating on their website is by this point, no longer up for debate for anyone willing to look at the evidence.

For those, however, who still may be on the fence about Backpage’s criminal negligence consider this episode from April 27, 2012 when a woman wrote an email to Backpage’s support department stating that her underage daughter had been kidnapped, drugged, and was being advertised as a prostitute against her will.

The email identified the specific phone number associated with the ads (754-229-xxxx), stated that the ads appeared on a website called, and asked that the ads be removed immediately.

As the woman wrote:

“This is a drugged and held-against-her will child who had photos taken under threat and duress. Please remove.”

If, in fact, Backpage had been the kind of legitimate organization Tony Ortega twisted himself into a pretzel to convince us all they were, you’d think the first response from the leadership of that company would have been to call the authorities and report the crime… Because that is what law abiding people do! As we will see, however, this is not how Backpage responded.

Instead, the email was forwarded up the chain of command to Backpage’s Operations Manager Andrew Padilla by a subordinate, who asked “should we respond?

Padilla replied by explaining that, because the website wasn’t directly owned by Backpage, so there was absolutely no need for them to respond at all. Three days later, on April 30, 2012, the same woman wrote another email to Backpage’s support department.

In this email, the woman stated:

       “I have contacted backpage on several occassions [sic] to remove these pictures which were posted against her will and while she was drugged and held captive. I have yet to receive a reply.”

This time, the woman provided a link to her daughter’s ad on Backpage (not, which included the same phone number (754-229-xxxx) that had been included in the other ad.

Still, Backpage and its cabal of grifting sex peddlers did nothing.

On May 1, 2012 (the very next day), the same woman wrote a third email to Backpage’s support department. In this email, the woman included a link to another ad on Backpage depicting her underage daughter and stated: “I also found a pix of my daughter within this url both girls are in protective custody.”

It wasn’t until the end of that that day, after three ignored attempts, that the woman received an email from Backpage’s support department begrudgingly stating: “The post is confirmed removed.

Court documents reveal that some of these emails were forwarded to Michael Lacey and James Larkin. In response, Larkin applauded Backpage’s “good solid response” to the woman and remarked: “this whole rigamarole seems a little odd to me.”

If that doesn’t speak to how “out of touch” Backpage’s leadership team was with regards to its corporate malfeasance, we don’t know what does. Perhaps they spent a little too much time listening to Tony Ortega’s propagandistic lies and not enough looking at the facts.

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