Pornhub Parent Company MindGeek Accused Of Transnational Organized Crime

Canada, Epstein, Luxembourg, Pornhub, USA -

Pornhub Parent Company MindGeek Accused Of Transnational Organized Crime

At least 34 women have filed a lawsuit in California, USA, against the Canadian-owned internet pornography website Pornhub, accusing it and its parent company Mind geek of violating federal sex trafficking laws, distributing child pornography, racketeering, and other crimes.

Lawyers representing the 34 plaintiffs accuse Pornhub and its parent company Mind geek of creating a marketplace for child rape media and "every other form" of nonconsensual sexual content, and want the company to pay damages. The suit alleges that Pornhub's parent company, Mind Geek, and its multiple porn brands, operate as a criminal enterprise that purchases, launders, and uploads illegal content often obtained through human trafficking, rape, and sexual assault.

MindGeek (formerly Manwin) is a privately held Canadian company that primarily focuses on pornography. It is owned by Feras Antoon, Bernd Bergmair (Bernard Bergemar), David Marmorstein, and Leonardo DaSilva.
Mind Geek operates under a shady structure, similar to transnational organized crime enterprises, it is operated by multiple companies across different countries such as the British Virgin Islands, Canada, Curaçao, Cyprus, Germany, Ireland, Mauritius, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Luxembourg. Canada has special tax treaties with Luxembourg, the legal headquarters of Mind Geek, where a Canadian subsidiary is exempt from taxes paid on royalties to its Luxembourg parent. Its structure has been described as a way to avoid corporate tax with billing companies in Ireland, subsidiaries in Curaçao, and holding ones in Cyprus and Luxembourg, all countries that have been identified as tax havens or having lax tax regulations.

MindGeek has been sued multiple times, including in California for hosting non-consensual pornography produced by GirlsDoPorn, which pressured women into appearing in their videos under false pretenses. In January 2021, a class action lawsuit making similar claims was launched in Montreal for anyone who had pornography photos and videos, some of which may have been taken when they were minors, shared on Mind Geek's sites without their consent, since 2007. The lawsuit stated that MindGeek knowingly did not "investigate or question its business partner regarding the mounting evidence of sex trafficking". In February 2021, a U.S.-based civil class action lawsuit was launched against MindGeek on behalf of child rape trafficking victims whose child sexual abuse material was uploaded to Pornhub.

The recent California lawsuit says, "This is a case about rape, not pornography." It goes on to describe Porn-hub and mind geek as "likely the largest non-regulatory repository of child pornography in North America and well beyond." At least Fourteen of the plaintiffs reported that they were minors when they were filmed and their sexual assaults or rape were uploaded to pornhub, they also state that they should be considered "a victim of child sex trafficking". Michael Bowe, a lawyer representing the women, told reporters the court could order Mind Geek to pay hundreds of millions to his clients.

The lawsuit also accuses Mind Geek of operating a "gaslighting campaign" online in a bid to discredit the victims, as well as making "threats of physical violence and death" against them. According to the lawsuit, MindGeek owns more than 100 pornographic sites, including Pornhub, RedTube, Tube8 and YouPorn, and has 3.5 billion visits each month. Pornhub, which claims 130 million visitors a day, has denied allegations of trafficking and announced a series of measures to combat illegal content.

Serena Fleites, the only plaintiff to be named, said that in 2014 she learned that "a nude, sexually explicit video" that her boyfriend had pressured her to make when she was only 13 years old had been uploaded to Pornhub without her consent. The video remained online until the teen, posing as her mother, asked Pornhub to remove it and even then the video was not taken down for several weeks. Meanwhile the video was downloaded and reuploaded by different users, with each video requiring a fresh request to remove it.

Another plaintiff who remained unnamed alleges she was also a victim of rape trafficking since the age of 10 and that she was also trafficked by Jeffrey Epstein. She reported that some of her abusers were “a ring of Hollywood men and New York financiers, including Jeffrey Epstein,” with many of her assaults recorded and widely distributed on Pornhub. She became aware of at least seven child rape media videos featuring her on Pornhub between 2011 and 2016. She was also forced to upload old videos herself as a form of punishment by her traffickers according to reports. With help of her therapist she attempted to get Pornhub to take the videos down yet Pornhub only took down some, and left others up.