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Saturday, January 19, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Washington

Backpage.com settles with 3 women in sex trafficking lawsuit

UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 3, 2017, 6:42 p.m.

Washington state attorney general Rob McKenna addresses a news conference about action being taken against Backpage.com Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2011, in Seattle. (Elaine Thompson / Associated Press)
Washington state attorney general Rob McKenna addresses a news conference about action being taken against Backpage.com Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2011, in Seattle. (Elaine Thompson / Associated Press)

SEATTLE – Three women who alleged they were sold for sex on Backpage.com as teenagers have settled their lawsuit against the website.

Their lawyers, Jason Amala and Erik Bauer, announced the confidential settlement Tuesday. The case had been scheduled for trial in Pierce County Superior Court next week.

In the 2012 lawsuit, the three said they were 13 to 15 years old when they were advertised on Backpage.com. They argued the website knowingly marketed commercial sex.

Backpage.com confirmed the settlement but declined to comment further. The site shut down its “escort” section this year.

The Washington Supreme Court ruled in 2015 that the federal Communications Decency Act doesn’t protect Backpage if plaintiffs allege the company didn’t just host the ads, but helped develop the content.

Other cases against Backpage remain pending in Washington, California and Texas.

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