The Convictions Begin

We have said from the beginning that many convictions would result from the criminal enterprise once known as Backpage.

This week we witness the start of that justice.

On April 10, 2019, one man from Claymont, Delaware and two from Wilmington were convicted of trafficking minors for sex via Backpage.com throughout Pennsylvania and Delaware.

Dkyle Jamal Bridges, a 33-year-old from  Claymont, and two Wilmington men, Kristian Jones, 25, and Anthony Jones, 35, were found guilty of  conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion  with adults and minors, and  sex trafficking three minors by force, fraud or coercion. And all of it was made possible by Tony Ortega’s former bosses.

From 2012 to 2017, the three men ran a prostitution ring, trafficking  women and girls throughout the mid-Atlantic region, the Department of Justice said in its closing pronouncement on the case.

Bridges routinely used violence, threatening the victims and forcing them to engage in sex acts.  Kristian and Anthony Jones helped run the sex trafficking ring by providing security and reserving hotel rooms, the DOJ said. And the profits they generated went straight to the coffers of Tony Ortega’s bosses.

A police officer started investigating the case after two minors were advertised for prostitution on Backpage.com. It was then discovered that scores more victims were  being advertised on the site, the DOJ said.

Regular readers will know the infamous site which Tony Ortega has long defended and supported, Backpage.com, has been accused of being involved in nearly three-quarters of the 10,000 child-trafficking reports received annually by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The site  has been sued repeatedly by state prosecutors, sex trafficking survivors and victims’ advocacy groups, and was  seized by federal authorities and shut down in April 2018 but its dark legacy of breaking women and young girls beings, reducing them to nothing more than commodities in the largest online brothel the world has ever seen continues.

As the first convictions begin it is evident this story is far from over. The men behind this cruel and ruthless empire of flesh will brought to account and all those who helped facilitate its crimes will be brought to justice.  Tony Ortega and his cronies have every reason to believe it will soon come for them too.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Comments are closed.