FBI Offers $50K Reward for This Alleged Pornographer

Michael James Pratt accused of using fraud, coercion to trick women into making videos
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 18, 2021 3:23 PM CDT
FBI Offers $50K Reward for This Alleged Pornographer
Michael James Pratt   (FBI)

Last week, 50 women settled a lawsuit over allegations that they were duped into making pornographic videos through fraud and coercion. The matter is not over, however. The FBI is offering a reward of $50,000 for information leading to the whereabouts of the owner of the website GirlsDoPorn, reports CNN. Michael James Pratt is a native of New Zealand, though his website had been based in San Diego, per NBC News. The women alleged that they answered ads for modeling jobs, only to learn that the work was actually for explicit videos, according to an FBI release. Authorities say many of the women went through with the videos, in exchange for up to $5,000, after being assured the videos would not be posted online.

However, the videos surfaced not only at Pratt's website but at sites including Pornhub, according to the FBI. The 50 "Jane Does" in the lawsuit received an unspecified settlement from Pornhub parent company MindGeek. They say they were tricked into signing releases with legalese. "Pratt allegedly paid other young women working for him to act as references to assure these victims that their videos would not be posted online," says Special Agent William McNamara of the FBI's San Diego office. "Some of the women were not permitted to leave the location until the videos were made, and some were forced to perform certain sex acts that they didn't want to." (More pornography stories.)

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