Sex Trade on Tenterhooks as Biggest Player Faces Trial

Hookers, bookers await website founder's fate
By Laila Weir,  Newser User
Posted Jun 17, 2008 5:45 PM CDT
The founder of has been called the "most influential man" in US prostitution.   (

(Newser) – Hookers and pimps are watching closely as “the most influential man” in US prostitution awaits trial. David Elms founded, a site where users rate prostitutes and leave comments along the lines of Amazon book reviews. Sex traders fear his jailing and the subsequent closing of his site could hurt business, reports the New York Times.

Some are eager to see Elms’ power wane, though, accusing him of demanding favors to promote women. His site gets 500,000 to 1 million visitors monthly and has been a hub for the sex trade as it's moved online—“Net walkers” now post detailed websites, to better attract and vet customers. Elms is being tried for gun and drugs charges unrelated to the site.