FBI agents raided the Oak Creek Canyon home of Michael Lacey, owner of Backpage.com on Friday, April 6. Lacey co-founded Backpage.com in 2004 as a classified ad website, now ranked second behind Craigslist for online classified advertising.

Lacey purchased the $1.6-million home in Oak Creek Canyon just north of West Fork Trail in 2013.

Backpage.com has been taken down, and a screenshot overlayed with an FBI notice reads: “backpage.com and affiliated websites have been seized as part of an enforcement action by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, with analytical assistance from the Joint Regional Intelligence Center.

“Other agencies participating in and supporting the enforcement action include the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California, the office of the California Attorney General and the office of the Texas Attorney General.”

The FBI seized the website and conducted raids at 10 properties around the United States under the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act 2017.

“The seizure of the malicious sex marketplace Backpage.com marks an important step forward in the fight against human trafficking,” U.S. Sen. John McCain [R-Ariz.] said in a statement released by his office. “This builds on the historic effort in Congress to reform the law that for too long has protected websites like Backpage from being held liable for enabling the sale of young women and children. Today’s action sends a strong message to Backpage and any other company facilitating online sex trafficking that they will be held accountable for these horrific crimes.”

McCain’s wife, Cindy McCain, is co-chairwoman of the Arizona Governor’s Council on human trafficking and is on the McCain Institute’s Human Trafficking Advisory Council. Cindy McCain has spoken in Sedona and around the state about combating human trafficking and sex crimes.

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