4 Charged as Craigslist Pimps

Chicago-area prostitution ring included high school runaways
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 21, 2007 4:00 PM CST
The San Francisco headquarters of Craigslist is seen in this file photo.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Four Chicago-area men were charged today with running a Craigslist prostitution ring that included girls who were high school freshmen and sophomores. The perps are accused of pimping at least 11 women under the popular site’s “erotic services” section, the Chicago Tribune reports. “If you’re looking for exploitation at its absolute worst, this is it,” said a county sheriff.

The accused, who face up to 30 years in prison, took in runaways—giving them food and shelter in return for prostitution. The Cook County sheriff’s office—which busted two other virtual brothels during a three-month investigation called Operation Quiet Money—accused Craigslist of being remiss in its civic duties, while recognizing that the site had no obligation to screen ads.