Dozens of women have filed a multi-million-dollar lawsuit against Pornhub, its parent company MindGeek and several other porn brands, in California Central District Court. The lawsuit alleges sex trafficking and distribution of child pornography.
The 179-page lawsuit was filed on behalf of 33 anonymous plaintiffs and Serena Fleites, who was featured in an opinion piece about Pornhub in The New York Times in December 2020.
The plaintiffs claim they were exploited as children and that the defendants in the lawsuit posted sexual content to Pornhub without the victims’ consent. The complaint says Pornhub and MindGeek intentionally profited from videos depicting rape, child sexual exploitation, revenge porn, trafficking, and other non-consensual sexual content.
The lawsuit says the use of this content allowed MindGeek to become the “dominant online pornography company in the world.” A central element of MindGeek’s business strategy was the maximum use of non-consensual content.
Fleites testified to the House of Commons in Canada in 2021, detailing her experience. She said that she ended up homeless, hooked on drugs and suicidal.
MindGeek owns more than 100 pornographic websites, and those websites generate more than 3.5 billion views each month.
MindGeek Settles Lawsuit Alleging Sex Trafficking
In a separate lawsuit against MindGeek, 50 women alleged that Girls Do Porn, another adult content website, falsely told them that videos of them having sexual intercourse would not be shared. That case eventually settled but the terms are confidential.
Girls Do Porn was part of MindGeek’s partner programs until October 2019. At that time, the U.S. Department of Justice basically shut them down and arrested senior staff for sex trafficking and other offenses.
Pornhub also faces a class-action lawsuit that was filed in December 2020 in Quebec, wherein the victims demanded $600 million to settle.
These lawsuits could be a watershed moment for victims of sexual assault and other non-consensual sexual activity, helping to expose widespread illegal activity.
If you have been a victim of sexual assault, sex trafficking, or if you believe you have been exploited in a similar way, please contact the Harrisburg sexual abuse and sexual assault lawyers at Schmidt Kramer for a free consultation and to discuss your potential legal remedies.
Call today to learn more. Phone: (717) 510-1782.