A Texas woman who is the victim of sex trafficking is suing Facebook, claiming the social media site gives predators unfettered access to children, Newsradio 1200 WOAI reports.
"If you profit from connections, users and interactions, then we expect you to make sure that those interactions are done in a safe say," attorney Annie McAdams, represents the victim, tells News Radio 1200 WOAI's Michael Board.
In the lawsuit, the woman identified as Jane Doe, says that, as a teenager, she thought she was speaking to a friend of a friend over facebook. This man sent her a message, saying she was “pretty enough to be a model.”
After a family fight in 2012, the the victim says in the suit that she ran into the arms of the man. Within hours of meeting, illicit photos taken of her were posted online and she was then raped, beaten, and forced into sex trafficking, she claims.
Her attorney, McAdams, says they're demanding that Facebook step up the verification process to make sure other children are tricked like she was.
"I think it's reasonable to expect that you have to verify your identity if you're interacting with the children in our community," she explains.
It has been a rough stretch for Facebook, which is blamed for allowing Russian operatives to shape public opinion during the presidential election using fake accounts to create public dischord.
In April 2018 testimony before Congress, Facebook Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the company had not taken a broad enough view of Facebook’s responsibility to the community and content.
“We [Facebook] need to make sure that people aren’t using it to harm other people or to spread misinformation. Across the board we have a responsibility to not just build tools, but to make sure they’re used for good," he testified.
The lawsuit, filed in Harris County, seeks at least $1 million in damages. Facebook has not responded to the claims.