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    (CNN)On Wednesday, Kamala Harris became the 49th vice president of the United States, the first woman, first Black and first South Asian person to hold that office. Since Harris announced her presidential bid in early 2019, she was met with pushback and reservations from progressives in the country due to her law enforcement record. People on the right view her as leftist. Some on the left see her as not progressive enough. She is, on some levels, a work in progress and, no doubt, will fall short of some people's expectations. But as her biographer, I'm here to tell you there's much more to Kamala Harris than meets the eye. When she became California attorney general at the start of 2011, Kamala Harris made clear that she had big plans for herself. Harris announced that former US secretaries of state Warren Christopher and George Shultz would co-chair the...
    PHOENIX (AP) — A federal judge married to Arizona's attorney general says she will not recuse herself from a criminal case against the former executives of Backpage.com, who are accused of using their classified section for soliciting prostitution. U.S. District Court Judge Susan Brnovich stated in a ruling filed late last week that her marriage to Attorney General Mark Brnovich, who's made critical statements about sex trafficking and Backpage, won’t affect her ability to be objective. In September, attorneys for Backpage founders Michael Lacey and James Larkin criticized statements made in a human trafficking booklet published by the attorney general’s office, which describes the ad site as a place where sex is frequently purchased. The request for Judge Susan Brnovich to recuse herself also said the attorney general has invited members of the public to visit websites that contain inflammatory information about Backpage and its operators. In the order, Judge...
    By JACQUES BILLEAUD, Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) — Former executives of Backpage.com are seeking the recusal of the federal judge presiding over a criminal case in which they are accused of knowingly publishing ads for sexual services, arguing that statements made by the judge’s husband, Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, about human trafficking and the now-shuttered classified ad site create a situation where the court’s impartiality could be questioned. In a court filing Wednesday, attorneys for Backpage founders Michael Lacey and James Larkin criticized statements made in a human trafficking booklet published by the attorney general’s office, which describes the ad site as a place where sex is frequently purchased. The request for Judge Susan Brnovich to recuse herself also said the attorney general has invited members of the public to visit websites that contain inflammatory information about Backpage and its operators. “He has publicly claimed that Backpage.com facilitated illegal...
    PHOENIX (AP) — Former executives of Backpage.com are seeking the recusal of the federal judge presiding over a criminal case in which they are accused of knowingly publishing ads for sexual services, arguing that statements made by the judge’s husband, Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, about human trafficking and the now-shuttered classified ad site create a situation where the court’s impartiality could be questioned. In a court filing Wednesday, attorneys for Backpage founders Michael Lacey and James Larkin criticized statements made in a human trafficking booklet published by the attorney general’s office, which describes the ad site as a place where sex is frequently purchased. The request for Judge Susan Brnovich to recuse herself also said the attorney general has invited members of the public to visit websites that contain inflammatory information about Backpage and its operators. “He has publicly claimed that Backpage.com facilitated illegal prostitution — the issue...
    Getty/(Flickr/Prime Ten Options) Backpage.com, now infamous for being a website incessantly used to facilitate prostitution, was a goal of present vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris when she was the lawyer basic of California. Nevertheless – and regardless of her perception that it must be eradicated – she was not accountable for shutting the web site down. As an alternative, she introduced expenses towards Backpage’s executives. Despite the fact that most of the expenses Harris’ workplace dropped at Backpage executives didn’t lead to convictions, she helped elevate the profile of the web site’s actions, which had been notably energetic in San Francisco and different metropolitan hubs throughout the U.S. Finally, a Division of Justice inquiry led the web site to get shut down. Right here’s the total story of Harris’ pursuit of Backpage.What Was Backpage?(Flickr/Prime Ten Options)Earlier than the web page was taken down, it...
    Getty/(Flickr/Top Ten Alternatives) Backpage.com, now notorious for being a site frequently used to facilitate prostitution, was a target of current vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris when she was the attorney general of California. However – and despite her belief that it should be eliminated – she was not responsible for shutting the website down. Instead, she brought charges against Backpage’s executives. Even though many of the charges Harris’ office brought to Backpage executives did not result in convictions, she helped raise the profile of the website’s activities, which had been particularly active in San Francisco and other metropolitan hubs across the U.S. Eventually, a Department of Justice inquiry led the website to get shut down. Here’s the full story of Harris’ pursuit of Backpage.What Was Backpage? (Flickr/Top Ten Alternatives)Before the page was taken down, it featured a look very similar to Craigslist or Classifieds. Backpage was a classified...
    Federal authorities say that the rescue of a 13-year-old girl who was being sex trafficked in North Texas in late 2019 led to the eventual indictment of a website owner who boasted that his site would be 'taking over from where Backpage left off.' The unidentified minor - who was saved last November - was just one of many identified minor victims who were advertised on CityXGuide.com - owned by 46-year-old Wilhan Martono.  Martono was indicted on June 2 on one count of promotion of prostitution and reckless disregard of sex trafficking, one count of interstate racketeering conspiracy, nine counts of interstate transportation in aid of racketeering and 17 counts of money laundering. He was arrested on June 17 by Homeland Security Investigations and the U.S. Secret Service, the United State Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Erin Nealy Cox announced in a statement.  The unidentified minor -...
    The U.S. Attorney’s Office has shut down a website that replaced Backpage.com, the online epicenter of child sex trafficking that was seized by the Justice Department in 2018, a statement released Friday said. The owner and operator of the site, Wilhan Martono, 46, was also arrested in Fremont, California on 28 federal counts, including sex trafficking, promoting prostitution, money laundering, and other related charges, the U.S. District Attorney’s Office statement says.  A Bay Area (CA.) man is in federal custody awaiting extradition to Texas by U.S. Marshals, where he is set to face federal charges that he set up sex trafficking websites on an international scale, raking in $21 million in proceeds within a 2-year span: https://t.co/nhMeeVYhGL — U.S. Marshals (@USMarshalsHQ) June 19, 2020 Martono’s sites included CityXGuide.com and affiliated websites which advertised prostitution, child sex trafficking,and other illicit services. The site was allegedly created to take over “from...
    Prosecutors in Texas announced Friday that they have taken down one of the largest websites to replace Backpage.com, the defunct classified website that allowed advertisements for prostitution and child sex trafficking. On Thursday, Wilhan Martono, 46, the owner and operator of several illicit websites that advertised prostitution around the world, was arrested on sex trafficking, money laundering and other related charges. His sites — CityXGuide.com and its affiliated websites, including 1Backpage.com — advertised prostitution, child sex trafficking and other illicit services. The online platforms he created contained hundreds of thousands of posts for "intimate activities" that users could filter by their location and interests.  During the investigation, law enforcement officers discovered correspondence between Martono and an advertiser who said the website was "taking over from where Backpage left off." In fact, court documents say that Martono registered the domain name for 1Backpage.com, CityXGuide.com and a half a dozen others the...
    FREMONT — A Bay Area man is in federal custody and awaiting extradition to Texas, where he is set to face federal charges that allege he set up sex trafficking websites on an international scale, raking in $21 million in proceeds within a two-year span. Wilhan Martono, 46, was arrested Wednesday in Fremont, and is in the Santa Rita Jail on a no bail hold. In coming days, the U.S. Marshals are expected to move him to Dallas, Texas, where he is facing 28 federal counts. The charges include conspiracy, promotion and facilitation of prostitution, racketeering, and more than a dozen money laundering charges. The indictment against Martono alleges that the site included not only adult prostitution “services,” but ads featuring “numerous child trafficking victims,” including one who was identified as a 13-year-old girl who was rescued in Texas last November. The website names included “CityXGuide,” and “BodyRubShop,” as well...
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