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Mpls. ties Backpage.com to 20 sexually exploited minors

Minneapolis City Council members are weighing a resolution Thursday that calls for the popular advertising website to halt running ads that fuel the sex trade at the expense of young people. Minneapolis police say that all 20 child sex-trafficking cases they have investigated so far this year involve juvenile victims being prostituted on this website.
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The Minneapolis City Council on Thursday is mulling a resolution that calls for the popular advertising website Backpage.com to stop running ads that critics say fuels the prostitution of minors, the Star Tribune reports.

The resolution targets Village Voice Media, which operates the site. Minneapolis police report that all 20 child sex-trafficking cases they have investigated so far this year involve juvenile victims being prostituted on this website.

The Village Voice, which also owns the Twin Cities-based weekly City Pages, says it has cooperated with investigators, but has resisted pressure to shut down its adult section of ads.

In May, a Minnesota man was charged with using minors for prostitution that he promoted on Backpage.com, Fox 9 reports.

One Minnesota mother earlier this month said the website lured her daughter into a life of prostitution.

The Los Angeles Times this week examined the thin line between free speech and sex crimes.

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