Ten More 'Girls Do Porn' Victims Join Lawsuit Against Pornhub

The number of women suing Pornhub's parent company Mindgeek in this complaint is now at 50. 

Apr 5 2021, 3:30pm

Ten more victims of sex trafficking operation Girls Do Porn have joined a lawsuit against Mindgeek, Pornhub's parent company. The lawsuit alleges that the platform knew about the producers' criminal activities years ago—and continued to host their non-consensual imagery on the site. 

In December, 40 women filed a lawsuit against Mindgeek, demanding more than $40 million in damages, plus any money Mindgeek earned from their videos, and legal fees. The amended complaint was filed on Thursday in San Diego federal court, according to local news outlet Fox 5 San Diego

The amended complaint brings the total number of plaintiffs up to 50, all filing anonymously  as Jane Does. The FBI indicted Girls Do Porn for federal counts of sex trafficking in October 2019, and in January 2020, a state judge awarded more than $12.7 million to 22 women who brought a civil case against Girls Do Porn, finding the production company guilty of fraud and coercion. The man performing in the videos, Andre Garcia, pled guilty to the federal trafficking charges against him in December, and Girls Do Porn owner Michael Pratt is on the FBI's Most Wanted list.

The complaint against Mindgeek details the extended abuse, harassment, and sexual violence that many women who were coerced into appearing in these videos endured. "As a proximate result of MindGeek’s knowing financial benefit and participation in GirlsDoPorn’s sex trafficking venture, Plaintiffs have suffered damages, including, but not limited to, severe emotional distress, significant trauma, attempted suicide, and social and familial ostracization," the complaint states. 

One of the Jane Doe plaintiffs alleged in the complaint that she used Pornhub's non-consensual content takedown portal to try to get videos where she appeared removed from the platform, and didn't get a response. 

"Im going to kill myself if this stays up here," she claims to have written. "I was scammed and told this was only going to be on dvds in another country. Please im begging you please ill pay!" She also claims she wrote to Tube8, another Mindgeek site: "They scammed me and told me it was only going to dvds in another country. Please this is ruining my life." 

That video remained up, according to the complaint, until the FBI's indictment. The plaintiffs allege that Mindgeek may have received "dozens, if not hundreds" of similar requests from Girls Do Porn victims.

In December, Pornhub radically changed its user guidelines to ban unverified uploads and downloads. Last week, the platform released its first-ever transparency report for 2020, as part of its updated trust and safety policies.

Tagged:

lawsuit, pornhub, gdp

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