Cracking down on prostitution listings on Craigslist

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Cook County Sheriff on a mission

PHOENIX - The Craigslist controversy.

One county Sheriff said the popular web site is the country's biggest source of prostitution and now he's trying to stop it.

The sheriff of CookCounty Illinois has filed a federal lawsuit against the online classifieds site saying it puts women and children in danger.

Sheriff Tom Dart said the ads posted in the "erotic" section of Craigslist often lead to exploitation.

And it's a problem in every state including right here in Arizona.

Sheriff Tom Dart is on a one-man mission.

Cook County, Illinois' top cop wants Craigslist to shut down its controversial "erotic" section.

He said it's promoting prostitution on a massive scale.

Dart said his office has made dozens of arrests for prostitution through Craigslist over the years.

One 19-year-old "Honey" answered an ad for modeling.

Instead she ended up in a hotel room, expected to perform sexual services and someone outside her door kept her from leaving.

Last November the website entered into a voluntary agreement with 40 attorneys generals, including Arizona's own Terry Goddard promising to crack down on prostitution postings.

But Sheriff Dart said he's seen no results on that agreement.

Craigslist released this statement in response to the sheriff's lawsuit saying their site is "An extremely unwise choice for those intent on committing crimes, since criminals inevitably leave an electronic trail to themselves that law enforcement officers will follow. On a daily basis, we are being of direct assistance to police departments and federal authorities nationwide."