In a blatant violation of civil rights, the FBI arrested former Backpage owners and longtime civil rights crusading journalists Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin. Lacey was supposed to be celebrating his recent marriage but instead was greeted by federal agents who invaded his house and hauled him away.
Jim Larkin faced a similar invasion of his privacy by the feds. In 2012, Lacey and Larkin sold their national newspaper chain Village Voice Media but retained the rights to their classified ad site Backpage.
The classified ad site had been under scrutiny from the federal government for some time due to claims that it facilitated sex trafficking but the journalists had sold that company as well in 2015. Shortly after this, Lacey and Larkin founded the First Amendment defending website Frontpageconfidential.
Michael Lacey’s attorney Paul Cambria has asserted that though he can not disclose any information regarding the case, his client will plead not guilty to these charges. Cambria also asserted that this is, in fact, a blatant act of government censorship and a violation of the First Amendment. Learn more about Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey: http://www.laceyandlarkinfronterafund.org/about-lacey-larkin-frontera-fund/michael-lacey/ and http://www.bizjournals.com/phoenix/potmsearch/detail/submission/6427818/Michael_Lacey
Senator John McCain’s wife Cindy is wrapped up in this situation as well and had had a well documented and long-standing feud with Lacey and Larkin over the years. As they have done with other public figures, the journalists have pulled no punches in the past in exposing acts of hypocrisy committed by John McCain in past years.
Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin have been through this sort of thing before as a result of their ardent defence of the First Amendment. They are no strangers to pushing the hot button with corrupt government officials and then ending up in jail for their trouble. They were wrongfully arrested in 2016 under trumped up charges of pimping by Senator Kamala Harris but were able to get the case thrown out.
Their most famous incident regarding arrest happened in 2007 when their longtime adversary, then Sheriff of Maricopa County Arizona Joe Arpaio had the journalists arrested on bogus charges. Read more: Michael Lacey | Twitter
The impending litigation that they pair sought and won ended up seeing them awarded a settlement of $3.7 million which they put to work for the cause of civil rights and First Amendment rights by founding the Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund.
Lacey and Larkin have been pretty consistent over the years in winning these sort of cases and having Cambria on their side is a great benefit. He has developed a serious reputation over the years in legal circles for being an attorney that can get things done.
Cambria has expressed his confidence that this will be resolved and that this grievous breach of justice will not stand.
Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin co-founded The Phoenix New Times in the early 1970s as a publication that would crusade for civil rights, immigrant and migrant rights and defense of the First Amendment.
Over the years they have stayed true to their convictions and have founded the philanthropic Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund as well as Frontpageconfidential in order to continue with their activism.