The sex industry isn't the only industry in which organized crime has suppressed labor rights. The mafia has a long history of infiltrating labor unions to embezzle members' dues while collaborating with company managers to break strikes. Much more on that here: http://www.americanmafia.com/Crime_And_Labor.html
From High Times Magazine:
I had seen US government reports that Vito Genovese and his boss, Charlie "Lucky" Luciano, had been used by the OSS and the Office of Naval Intelligence throughout World War II...to assist in the invasion of Italy and later to prevent Communists and Socialists from winning elections in postwar Italy. http://www.hightimes.com/read/married-mob-and-cia
Here is an anonymous account of mafia presence in the sex industry:
Dear Stella: Welcome to the club! I just found out about you because I’m coming out of yet another round of having to go “underground” for a while to save my ass literally because of the work I do not only in trying to get the “truth” out about sex work and trafficking – but also about how some groups are “claiming” to help prostitutes and trafficking victims in order to get large donations and grants but are clearly shell operations that deliver none of the services they’re representing themselves to be offering in order to solicit money – as well as being a person who actively and directly does assist people/victims to get out of sex work and/or of being trafficking victims and into new lives. As a direct connection with being so close to the only state in the USA that does have “legalized” prostitution here in Nevada – I’m surrounded not just by the very same people you mentioned in your letter here – but also with the many “friends” of the brothel industry who have clearly stated their main goal is to expand legal prostitution outside of Nye County, and into Las Vegas and the world if they can. I will never forget the backlash I went through after I stood up with Melissa Farley and gave the press conference here in September of 2007 about her report on sex trafficking in Nevada. I had the Mayor threatening a reporter who published an interview with me with a “baseball bat to the head” if he ever set foot in Vegas again after he “dared” to publish this interview. I then saw the Mayor with my own eyes threaten Metro Officers with termination if they even so much as “looked” at her report or attended the conference we were giving later on in the day about it at UNLV. There was a suspicious batch of empty chairs in fact where we had left reserved seating for Metro at the conference. The next day after the news – I had my phone lines, internet lines and cable lines physically cut that were running into my apartment. I then had the Nevada Power company turn off my power. When I called in about it – I was told I had to pay them $2000 for my dead mother and dead grandmother’s electric bills in order to get service restored (when I had never even been billed for this or received any notice about this whatsoever before). When they refused to restore service or make any type of payment arrangements even on such an illegal charge in the first place – I asked an Assemblyman who assured me he would give me “back-up” if I came forward to be a part of this press conference if he could do anything.
It turned out that a brothel owner also happened to be on the board of Nevada Power (which explains how I got illegally cut off). The assemblyman was able to get my power restored in one hour by making a phone call – but then he got literally “set-up” on phony ethics charges shortly thereafter and lost his position as assemblyman. People from the Review Journal actually made a $5.00 deposit into an account off a website he didn’t even monitor anymore and that he didn’t know about – and then when he didn’t report it – they file an “ethics” charge against him! On top of that – I had the cable, phone and internet company I had service with cut me off and send me final bills. When I called to get my service restored – they claimed that “I” had called to close out my service. This is information I would think could only have been obtained by people in law enforcement. What made it even more interesting was I had made an appointment to meet with a teenager and their probation officer to discuss helping to get her away from her pimp – when all of these services went off at almost the same exact time as my appointment. The intimidation factor was clear – and this probation officer was too scared to even speak to me again. I was able to get the teenager out of state however to a safe residential program for prostitutes despite the clear attempts at interference and intimidation. I’ve had Metro officers who were “in bed” with traffickers literally handcuff me in a parking garage and laugh about how easy it would be to shoot me and “claim it was me resisting arrest” or how they could leave my body in the desert never to be found if I didn’t give up this work and leave the state. I’ve had a brothel owner, one of his friends, a sheriff, my then-apartment manager, and another goon show up at my house with a moving truck and “tell” me how they were going to relocate me out of Nevada to “anywhere else I wanted to go but in Nevada” because “it was time that I leave” Nevada. I had been asked once to come to Carson City when they were voting on the issue of whether or not brothels could pay sales tax – which was clearly an attempt to get themselves considered “legitimate” business. Besides, if they paid state sales tax – they could then demand to sell their “wares” anywhere in the state – so it was very important for them to get this vote approved. The night before I was going to leave for Carson City – I had four cops show up at my doorstep over a traffic ticket I’d already paid years ago in Clark County. They claimed there was a warrant out for me for not paying this ticket – and arrested me. They then held me until they supposedly discovered – oh viola – I did pay these tickets and let me go about two hours after the vote was done. Since I was held less than 72 hours I understand I couldn’t prosecute for wrongful arrest and detainment.
They’ve spread rumors a bout me and any reporter in Nevada who has written a story or interview about me – has been fired within one month of the story being published. I have had a reporter at the Review Journal tell me to my face that “a story will never run on you or your work in this state ever – even if it costs the lives of 100′s of young women who won’t be able to find help because of it”. When there was a trafficking program out here in Vegas one year that had a budget to do something about trafficking – they weren’t getting any referrals. I found out they were only allowed to get referrals from one Metro Officer – who the victims I’d worked with out here reported to me he was one of the traffickers and made deals with other pimps out here. There’s no way he’s going to refer a victim that’s going to blow the whistle on him – so I pressed the director to be allowed to receive referrals from another source. When I pointed out to her that she should question why she’s never getting any referrals from this guy in this town – I then got met with a threat from a local FBI agent to have myself locked up on a psychiatric charge and my daughter taken away from me if I continued to push on this woman to actually do something in this town to really help victims and identify the real traffickers out here. When Jeanne Palfrey was found dead – I suspected foul play because she had gone to her mother’s in the first place because she was being followed for one thing – and for another every high profile white female madam I know of that’s ever been in a situation like this has had attempts made on her life (some of them have been made to look like suicide – hanging in all of the cases for some reason just like with Jeanne). When I called the detective in charge of her case and demanded that there be a full and “real” investigation as to foul play done or I’d go to the media with the emails between her and I for the last two years that would clearly show this was not suicide – I then was greeted with five police officers in cars and a drug dog showing up at my home at 4:00 a.m. with an unsigned warrant with no charges against me to search my apartment for vague unnamed “papers”. They were clearly trying to find something illegal in my home – and when that failed they became angry. When they failed to find any of the papers from Jeanne in my home – they got even angrier. They actually called a CPS officer to demand they come and remove my child from the home claiming it was a “pigsty” after they had trashed the place themselves. In my protection – this particular agent just laughed at their request and hung up on them! But when they failed to find anything to arrest me illegally – one of the officers them emba
rked on a whole campaign to ruin my life.
He told my landlord if he didn’t kick me out – he’d revoke his business license and shut down the whole complex. He then went to my bank and falsely claimed I’d filed an identity theft case against myself and that the person who was using my bank account “wasn’t me” and I had to go down to my bank to “prove” who I was to even get my own money back out again. So between the years of harassments, and threats and some of them even actual death threats – I can tell you it is not an easy road to walk when you’re trying to help prostitutes and trafficking victims. But I am tired of trying to report some of what’s happening to people like me and having people think I’m nuts – but as more and more of us come forward and tell our story – we are then believed. Just as when we were trafficking victims – and now when we’re being re-victimized in this manner. I’ve spoken to people like Shelley Lubben and others in this field who have also had horrible other “set-ups” pulled against them, threats, etc. – and as long as we’re not talking about it publically we are just being made to sound like we’re crazy. This is why I feel there is the need for a forum for us to be telling our stories – not just about when we were victims of sex trafficking – but now that we are victims to harassment, threats and intimidation for the work we’re trying to do to help others. I’m also getting really tired of seeing some groups rake in millions of dollars in donations and grants – that are not being used as they’re supposed to be used – and to see these prostitutes being “re-pimped” by the so-called field that’s been supposedly set-up out there to try and help them escape pimps! For this reason I have started a radio program (I”m tired of physically being threatened – so I’m going on the radio this time and not showing my face or using my real name on this) where I will interview people like yourself. Please get in touch with me so we can talk. These people count on the fact we tend to keep to ourselves and keep a lot inside – and that’s how some of us are being chased out of this field – or forced out of this field as in how they did Sharnel Silvey recently. Thanks – Jody firstname.lastname@example.org http://prostitutionresearch.com/pre_blog/2012/06/28/pimps_will_be_pimps_part_2_of/
Porn News today writes about how the stigmatization of sex work allows organized crime to have greater influence in the porn industry:
After leaving the Los Angeles porn industry, those who choose to tell the truth about the unprofessional business practices and/or criminal activity of which they know of or have witnessed often face threats, intimidation and harassment targeted not only towards themselves, but their family members as well, from people who have a tremendous interest in ensuring that the truth is never told. One particular “tactic” that is utilized by individuals who’s goal is to ensure that the truth of the Los Angeles porn industry is suppressed – is the element of “shame”. As of current, several women who have chosen to come forward (in regards to the abuse and exploitation they suffered while working in the Los Angeles porn industry) have been extensively researched and have had their family members (mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, etc) contacted, harassed, threatened and/or questioned by individuals attached to Los Angeles porn industry professionals.
As of current the PornNewsToday team is aware of two ex-pornstars who have had family members who were nearly EXTORTED by individuals attached to the Los Angeles porn industry and the Free Speech Coalition. The PornNewsToday team believes that this is a psychological tactic utilized in effort to not only “shame” the ex pornstar into going silent, but also to discredit the ex-pornstar publicly. The Los Angeles porn industry is very aware that if the general public perceives an ex-pornstar as having come from a dysfunctional and/or abusive house hold, they are more apt to view them as “damaged”, ”insane” or “crazy” – and such a “tainted image is exactly the image the Los Angeles porn industry wants anyone who doesn’t play their game to have.
Being that the Los Angeles porn industry and individuals attached to the Free Speech Coalition have assisted in projects and research that can only be deemed as “stalkumentaries” (documentaries designed to discredit those attempting to get the truth out) on individuals such as anti-porn activist Shelley Lubben, the PornNewsToday team has decided in return to do their own research on individuals in and attached to the Los Angeles porn industry who consistently feed the Free Speech Coalition and Los Angeles porn producer and distributor’s propaganda to the public. pornnewstoday.com/pnt/?p=4238
more from former porn producer Mike South about the FSC's connections to organized crime:
Shady Shit Going On With The FSC and Mike Gatto – Say It Ain’t So
By Mike South
June 10th, 2013
An informed Reader Writes:
During his run for state assembly Mike Gatto sent out this flyer that seemed to indicate he was a Republican. It was just a routine political campaign trick, but it worked. He got a lot of bad press for it, but in the end he won, and that’s what matters. It was called sleazy, and underhanded, but that’s politics.Lets take a close look at this flyer. It uses the name “Citizens For Good Government”. This organization had NOTHING to do with this flyer, and received no payment of any kind for producing or distibuting it. See the following link. And read the comments, one in particular will be of interest to the adult industry.
[B]Now lets take a look at the No on Government Waste (No on B) official financial disclosure documents. What do we see, a $6,500.00 payment to “Citizens For Good Government.” Diane, as the official treasurer of No on B can you tell us exactly who you paid this $6500.00 to, because it wasn’t Citizens for Good Government.[/B]
Maybe there is another group that uses the same name, and this could be easily cleared up, so if Diane could just provide contact information for this group so we can verify who they are, and what they did for the campaign that would be helpful.And then Mike Gatto, chairman of the Appropriations committee single hand-idly shelves AB332. There was NO vote in the Appropriations Committee, as reported by some adult news outlets. It is the chairman alone who decides what gets of the suspense file. Smells like James Lee and Diane were up to some shenanigans, is this the Republican help Diane was tallking about?
Much, much, much more will be coming up very shortly about this. The folks at Sadler Strategic Media, who were paid more than $200,000.00 by No on Measure B were not to anxious to talk about ‘where the money went’ That’s a huge chunk of ALL the money received by the No On Government Waste Committee. Then we see that the FSC DONATES 40,000 to No on B, then FSC receives a PAYMENT of 10,000 from No on B listed as a “CVC” or civic donation I dont know what that means but we all will shortly.
This is just the beginning of looking into this. Many details are still sketchy, and this is a work in progress. Now if I could just find out who the Coalition For Senior Security is. Getting back to work, more to follow. Sleep tight Diane.
Assemblymember Mike Gatto Accused Of Blocking Statewide Condom In Porn Bill
[B]The FSC is lobbying to prevent the mandatory use of condoms using illegal compaign donations.[/B] More from AIDS Health:
During its victorious campaign for ‘Yes on B,’ backers of the measure filed formal complaints with California’s Fair Political Practices Commission and the Federal Election Commission ove[B]r illegal donations from Manwin, a foreign porn cartel that was the largest single donor to the ‘No’ campaign[/B]
LOS ANGELES (December 24, 2012) Officials from AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) and other backers of the victorious Ballot Measure B, the ‘County of Los Angeles Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act’—which now requires porn producers to obtain public health permits and use condoms in their films—are stepping up their call for the campaign against the measure to return illegal contributions of $220,000 to the failed effort to defeat the law made by Manwin, a foreign porn cartel based in Luxembourg.
[B]The call comes on the heels of news of the arrest and jailing in Germany of Manwin’s Fabian Thylmann on tax evasion charges.[/B] Throughout its victorious campaign for ‘Yes on B,’ backers of the measure filed formal complaints with both California’s Fair Political Practices Commission’s Enforcement Division (FPPC) and the Federal Election Commission (FEC) over suspected illegal donations from Manwin, a foreign porn cartel that was the largest single donor to the ‘No’ campaign.
“[B]It appears that Manwin’s Fabian Thylmann, a foreign tax-cheat who until recently was being held in jail in Germany on tax evasion charges bankrolled the opposition to Measure B, the porn safety law recently passed by an overwhelming majority of Los Angeles County voters in the November election,[/B]” said Michael Weinstein, president of AIDS Healthcare Foundation and one of the five named proponents of the ballot initiative. “We suspected that [B]donations to the ‘No on B’ campaign from Manwin throughout the election campaign raised serious questions about money from a foreign porn cartel being given to an election campaign in the United States—an illegal act that constitutes a felony.[/B] Now, with his arrest and detention in Germany on charges of tax evasion—the first cousin of money laundering—we are renewing our demand that the ‘No on B’ campaign return at least $220,000 in political contributions that appear to have been made illegally by Manwin.”
[B]The demand was made in a letter sent to Diane Duke, head of the adult industry trade group, the Free Speech Coalition, and who serves as treasurer of the ‘No on Government Waste, No on Measure B—major funding by Manwin USA’ committee[/B] that was signed by Miki Jackson, a citizen proponent of Measure B and a consultant to AHF. The letter states:
“The purpose of this letter is to request that you return $220,000 in contributions to your committee, ostensibly given by a group named “Manwin USA.” Given the history of the foreign-owned Manwin group, and the current tax evasion issues facing Fabian Thylmann, Manwin’s founder, and the previous return of a contribution to your committee by what appears to be a foreign subsidiary of Manwin, these contributions are of suspect provenance, and likely may be from foreign sources. As you know, such contributions, if from foreign sources, would violate California election and campaign laws.”...Ms. Duke, as you are also the head of [B]the Free Speech Coalition, which has received major financial backing from Manwin entities[/B], and as this Coalition also made a $40,000 contribution to your committee, we are equally concerned about the origin of that money.
- See more at: http://www.aidshealth.org/archives/15367#sthash.vRPkyRbm.dpuf
[B]One of Measure B's major funders, porn conglomerate Manwin (now known as Mindgeek) also just so happens to have won the Free Speech Coalition's “Benefactor of the Year” award.[/B] The FSC blog states “This award goes to the company that has demonstrated a consistent commitment to philanthropy and advocacy within the adult industry and throughout mainstream society. This award is given to a company that not only helps break the myths and misinformation about the adult industry through its contributions, but also assists in protecting the industry from legislative threats, industry-wide exploitation, business risks, and industry critics.” But what the FSC fails to mention in that article is that Manwin is also one of the FSC's main funders as well. http://fscblogger.wordpress.com/2012/10/26/recipients-of-free-speech-coalition-awards-announced
In the real world, Manwin is a ruthless multinational corporation that resorts to content theft to avoid paying producers, directors, performers, and virtually everyone else in the adult entertainment industry. The company's interest in funding Measure B has little to do with free speech and everything to do with increasing revenue for their own shareholders. Manwin owns a large network of adult video sharing websites including Youporn, xtube and Pornhub, which collectively have created a virtual porn monopoly. The founders have preserved anonymity via a string of parent companies, all operating under the same business model. More from NYMag:
“For one brief moment here at the 2011 Adult Video Awards in Las Vegas, America’s porn performers can forget about the Golden Decade of the Teen Wanker and remember when they were stars....This evening, if only for a few hours, the industry is doing its best to ignore the explosion of free porn online that has made the early-21st century such a bonanza for masturbators. It’s difficult. The Adult Entertainment Expo taking place simultaneously at the Sands has scaled back dramatically; Vivid and Adam & Eve, two of the best-known companies in the business, didn’t even have booths on the main floor this year. There are no Jenna Jamesons on this red carpet, and even the idea of a porn A-list seems dated. Performers are making less money, working harder for it, getting fewer jobs. ...The chief culprits in the eyes of the porn Establishment are the “tube sites,” YouTube-like repositories of content that is often free, and often pirated.
“Tubes are going to destroy our industry,” says Sunny Leone, 29, an Indian-American knockout who is celebrating eight nominations this evening. “Fans don’t understand that if they don’t pay for porn, we can’t make a living.”
“ ...Until the invention of the tubes, online porn was relatively simple to watch and lucrative to sell. With very little money and a For Dummies–level understanding of HTML code, anyone could put up a web page featuring a list of text links to other porn websites. If a surfer clicked on one of the links, he would be directed to a paysite; the paysite would pay the referring site a tiny amount for the traffic, and kick back a more substantial amount if the surfer ended up subscribing to the site. ..It was inevitable, once YouTube launched in 2005, that someone would start a porn equivalent.
Sure enough, over two months in the summer of 2006, three different sites launched that would become major adult-only tubes: PornoTube, RedTube, and YouPorn. Like YouTube, the porn tubes were flooded with free content—some of it licensed for pennies from older companies that didn’t understand the web, much of it pirated from paid sites. The tubes had a new business model: They made most of their money by keeping surfers on their sites and selling banner ads, though they also put some content behind a paywall...When the old porn companies complained that the tube sites were stealing their content, the tubes claimed, as YouTube did, that the “safe harbor” provision of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act absolved them of responsibility for “user-uploaded” content.”
“ Never mind that [B]industry consensus was that the sites were doing the uploading themselves.[/B] [B](How else to explain tube sites full of content from day one?)[/B] The sites could simply deny it...In December 2007, nine months after Viacom sued YouTube for copyright infringement, Vivid sued PornoTube. Around the same time, an anti-tubes diatribe was posted on GFY by Ouissam Youssef, a co-founder of Brazzers, one of the most successful new companies producing and branding online content. In a thread on piracy earlier that year, “Brazzer,” as Youssef called himself on GFY, declared that content thieves “will not steal it and get away with it, their days are counted!”
In fact, Youssef had already helped launch a tube site of his own. In January 2007, Matt Keezer, another of Brazzers’ creators, had bought the domain name pornhub.com for $2,750 from a speculator Keezer had met the previous year at the Playboy Mansion. PornHub went online as a tube site in early 2007. It was owned by a separate company called Interhub, but the Brazzers group were silent partners. Brazzers and the tube sites were owned by the same people and run out of the same office. another of Brazzers’ creators, had bought the domain name pornhub.com for $2,750 from a speculator Keezer had met the previous year at the Playboy Mansion....They were making good, easy money, and they rapidly expanded, creating their own affiliate network (Jugg Cash) and their own paysite.
In December 2007, the same month that Vivid sued PornoTube, rumors began to circulate in the industry that Brazzers also owned the increasingly successful and much-loathed PornHub. When GFY’s amateur sleuths turned up connections between domain names and corporate registrations that suggested common ownership, “Brazzer” (a.k.a. Youssef) responded vaguely that he had been “approached” about starting a tube site but had “refused” because “it would be 100 percent against the core interests of our business.” This answer did nothing to dispel suspicions, and Brazzers quickly came to be viewed by its many industry critics as an almost The Firm–like criminal corporation.
On GFY, the founders were scorned as “thieves,”....At trade shows they kept a low profile....[B]In October 2009, the U.S. Secret Service’s Organized Fraud Task Force in Atlanta seized about $6.4 million in funds from two Fidelity bank accounts controlled by Mansef,[/B] the Brazzers holding company. By this point, the company was already experiencing internal troubles. Matt Keezer had left earlier that year; his brother Phil then joined as CEO, only to leave within a few months. At least some of the founders had grown concerned for their safety and hired security guards, who for several months patrolled their neighborhood 24 hours a day in SUVs with tinted windows.
In response to the asset seizure, Mansef claimed that it had opened the Fidelity accounts simply to ease payment processing in the U.S., but the Feds said that [B]more than $9 million had been wired into the two accounts over a three-month period from banks in Israel and other countries on financial-fraud watch lists.[/B] The founders decided it was time to sell the company and get out of the industry altogether, and within a few months, the auteurs behind TeensLikeItBig and InGangWeBang had receded into a search-engine-optimized fog of web spam and redundant social-media profiles. One of Ouissam Youssef’s LinkedIn appearances states that he obtained his M.B.A. from the Wharton School of Business and is a special consultant at Accenture Plus Limited in Monaco. (Wharton has no record of his attendance, Accenture Plus Limited doesn’t exist, and plain old Accenture says he has never worked for the firm.) Only near the bottom of page three of Stephane Manos’s well-scrubbed Google results does one glimpse his connection to Brazzers.
Meanwhile, you wouldn’t believe how philanthropic these guys are. Youssef hopes to build “a foundation that will help impoverished children play organized sports,” his website announces. Manos, per his blog, is a “charity contributor.” As for Matt Keezer, he “strongly believes in our children of the world and supports UNICEF’s Canadian programs.” [B]Mansef’s and Interhub’s assets were sold to a German named Fabian Thylmann[/B]....In the last few years, Thylmann has been on an acquisitions tear. He bought another European amateur site (MyDirtyHobby), a cam site (Webcams.com), and xTube. By March 2010, he owned both Mansef’s and Interhub’s assets, too, including the Brazzers and Mofos paysite networks and four tube sites. GFYers gossiped that he spent $140 million on the purchase, which Thylmann confirms is “close enough.”... Thylmann has been programming since he was 17. He began writing software to collect Internet-traffic statistics, and because porn was generating most of the web’s traffic, he ended up getting work writing code for adult websites. In the early aughts, [B]he wrote an affiliate-tracking software package called NATS that came to dominate the industry. [/B]By late 2006, he had cashed out of the company he had co-founded and started looking around for other companies to buy. http://nymag.com/news/features/70985/
Here is a diagram for how Manwin employs piracy as a business model:
Mike South comments:
“did you know that every single video on any of the tube sites is checked by a human person? The only reason videos are removed is for compliance violations, NEVER for dmca. Copyright videos are only taken down by the managers and only when the owner requests it.” That came from a source inside Manwin/MindGeek, what it means is that they absolutely have knowledge that copyrighted material is being posted to their tube sites and that essentially by approving the post they are the ones posting it.
If you have a suit ready to go against Manwin/MindGeek I can help on that front. It should also be noted that according to my sources Manwin/MindGeek has issued an edict that no employee is allowed to speak with any form of press and that they have installed keystroke loggers to find out who is talking to me, in particular.
If you work for Manwin NEVER contact me while on a company computer or on the company network….I know that you tech guys know this but others may not. Even an email from gmail can be keystroke logged. Contact me from your cell phone while on your carriers network or from your personal isp at home. I dont want anyone be in trouble for speaking the truth.
I am also hearing that much of the tubesite work is now going to be outsourced to Cyprus and Ireland and that Canadian tubesite division, long immune to firings and layoffs may be impacted. Manwin/MindGeek is cutting costs anyplace they can and the people in Cyprus work for a lot less.
And now for a personal note from me to Feras Antoon, David Tassilo, Demetrios Kokozos and all the rest of you scumbags trying to destroy the honest people in this industry
I Will NEVER Stop Hunting You! http://www.mikesouth.com/mike-south-commentary/every-single-video-on-manwin-tubes-is-approved-by-a-human-being-manwin-installing-key-loggers-9060/
In addition to copyright infringement, Manwin has also been charged with tax evasion and cybercrime, leading to accusations by porn industry insiders PornNewsToday that the company is a mafia front organization. Measure B's sponsor, California State Assemblymember Mike Gatto, has been linked to mafia activity as well. Health and safety regulations are an issue that most directly affect the workers themselves, so it becomes a huge problem when their voices are left out of the decision-making process while a criminal syndicate attempts to purchase public policy.
Isadore Hall tweet with Gatto about Measure B safety violations:
Lo and behold, the Gatto crime family has its own wikipedia entry:
The crew was led by capo Peter LaPlaca until the mid-1970s when Louis "Streaky" Gatto took over. Louis and his son Joseph Gatto Jr. led the crew operating in Bergen and Passaic counties in north New Jersey. They controlled large illegal gambling, loansharking and bookmaking rackets. The father and son duo used violence and fear to collect on these rackets, esuring rivals would not take advantage of their illegal activities. In 1989, Gatto Sr. was indicted on two murder counts and received 65 years and his son Gatto Jr. was also indicted on racketeering charges and received 30 months.
Joseph "The Eagle" Gatto Jr. was released in 1993 and assumed control of his father's crew. He would expanded the crew's illegal gambling operations by introducing the use of pagers and cell phones. By 1999, Gatto Jr. was convicted on illegal gambling charges and took a plea deal where he admitted that he was a capo with the Genovese family. Gatto Jr. was released in 2003, but he was indicted again in 2004 for running the Catalina Sports an offshore wire room in Costa Rica. The sports bar allegedly grossed $300,000 to $500,000 in profit per week. The conviction was overturned in 2005. The prosecutions tried again in 2008. Gatto Jr. died in April 2010 of natural causes and a free man. It is unknown who has taken over leading crew today. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genovese_crime_family_New_Jersey_faction#The_Gatto_crew
So, it shouldn't be too shocking that Assemblymember Mike Gatto's father, Joseph Gatto, was shot and killed during a possible invasion of his Los Angeles home. Was Joseph Gatto's murder the result of an internal feud within the Gatto organized crime family? abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?id=932530
Pornnews Today reveals Mike Gatto's connection to the City of Bell corruption charges:
In California there are 2 people who I’ve found to create slate mailers utilizing the name “Citizens for Good Government”. 1) Yolanda Miranda of Yolanda Miranda and Associates, who in 2012 was paid around $13,500 by Mike Gatto’s buddy Tom Calderon (a business partner of the former mayor George Cole – a central figure in City of Bell scandal). 2) Tom Kaptain – who the LA Weekly has written an article on regards to the shady tactics of slate mailers.
Now lets talk about the City of Bell scandal real quick… That particular scandal had to do with the misappropriation of public funds. Former mayor of the City of Bell, George Cole faced corruption charges. GEORGE COLE had a business partner named TOM CALDERON (the same Tom Calderon who paid around $13,500 to Yolanda Miranda in 2012 and THE SAME TOM CALDERON THAT MIKE GATTO SUPPORTED FOR STATE ASSEMBLY in 2012).
In 2010 former District Attorney called the Bell Scandal “corruption on steroids” – but here’s something a bit odd - in this article (click here) it states that George Cole worked with YOLANDA MIRANDA and ASSOCIATES.
No on Measure B mailers were distributed by a supposed Republican organization claiming to be Citizens For Good Government, however the legitimate Citizens for Good Government group claims the mailer was not authorized by their organization. Were the fake mailers distributed by a mafia front group allied with the Free Speech Coalition under the cover of reducing "big government" regulation? [B]Did Mike Gatto and other No on Measure B campaign supporters, including Diane Duke, create fraudulent mailers that would present lack of safety regulations in the porn industry as a "free speech" issue? [/B]
It's kind of an amusing maneuver, actually, because Measure B would require increased government spending which is not in keeping with Republicans' fiscal austerity measures. Yet another example of continuity of purpose between organized crime and the religious right, and the conservative Citizens for Good Government doesn't seem too pleased with the way their neoliberal economic plan is being employed. Thankfully California voters were able to prevent Big Porn cartel Manwin from purchasing political policy.
via Citizens for Good Government:
NOTICE: There are various “mailers” and Voter’s Guides being distributed in various areas, cities and counties in California that bear the name “Citizens For Good Government.” These mailers and voters guides do not have names our return addresses so a number of concerned California citizens have looked on the internet and found US.
We are headquartered in Cleveland County, North Carolina and have recommended conservative candidates, revealed government corruption and reported all things political for around 17 years. We have concentrated in North Carolina and have not yet expanded into California. We own the rights to citizensforgoodgovernment.org and citizensforgoodgovernment.com. These California mailers and Voter’s Guides under the name “Citizens For Good Government” are NOT from us.
We understand California primary elections this year are under a new “Open Primary System” that allows cross party voting in the primary elections. This appears to have offered an unintended consequence of cross party voting expressly for the purpose of weakening the other party and especially conservative candidates.
Please California, do not fall for this trick. Check out your candidates and vote for conservatives. Please do this quickly as the California Primary Election is Tuesday. And, Remember this. When you see a genuine “Citizens For Good Government” publication, you will find a name, address, telephone number and email address. When you call our number, we will answer. http://citizensforgoodgovernment.org/online/2012/06/03/hello-california/ note: Please don't vote conservative.
Here's more information on one of the websites owned by Measure B funder Manwin aka Mindgeek via wikipedia:
“In December 2010 two California residents filed suit in the U.S. District Court of the Central District of California against the owner of pornography Web site YouPorn. The suit alleges that YouPorn has violated cybercrime and consumer-protection laws by using surreptitious technology to harvest information about what sites they had visited. YouPorn is owned by Midstream Media International NV, a subsidiary of Manwin based on the island of Curaçao.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MindGeek
What this effectively means is that people connected to Youporn were hacking into the computers of their customers without those customers having any awareness of the security breach. Digital Playgound is another company owned by Manwin, and its users were also subjected to a security breach where over 73,000 subscribers had their usernames, emails and passwords hacked, allegedly by a hacker group called the Consortium. www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-17339508
What's interesting is that[B] the owner of Manwin aka Mindgeek, Fabian Thylmann, developed the NATS (Next-generation Administration & Tracking System) affiliate marketing software which is frequently used for hacking purposes.[/B]
Here is more information on how the particular kind of sofware Thylmann developed is used for hacking:
Every night for the past week I have been trying to rid my in-law's computer of malware that has gone undetected by just about every anti-virus, anti-spyware/adware, and anti-rootkit scanner that I can throw at it, and yes, I ran all the updates....There is a new economy on the internet, and it's all about bad guys getting paid to infect computers. Control and use of the infected computers is sold to other criminals. Once purchased, the criminals use the infected PCs for whatever purposes they see fit. The hacked computers may be used in bot nets to attack other systems, or the victim's data may be harvested so that the criminals can steal their credit card information or other personal info useful for identity theft, blackmail, extortion, or other bad things.
It all starts with affiliate marketing programs run by malware developers who pay anyone who is willing to infect or "install" their malware to a large number of computers. According to Kaspersky's Securelist site, malware developers may pay affiliates $250 or more per 1000 PCs that their malware is installed on. Each affiliate gets an ID number that is embedded in the installed software. The affiliate ID number makes sure the bad guy that installed the malware on the victims' computers gets credit for the installs so that the malware developer can keep track of how much money to pay them. It can be extremely lucrative for the criminals running the affiliate marketing program as well as the people who are willing to install their malware to thousands of computers. http://netsecurity.about.com/od/antivirusandmalware/a/The-Shadowy-World-Of-Malware-Affiliate-Marketing.html
[B]The software company that maintain the NATS is Too Much Media[/B], and its website states it was founded by John Albright, Fabian Thylmann and Charles Berrebbi. Surprise, surprise. It looks like [B]Too Much Media has been “subjected” to hacker attacks[/B] as well.
Consumers of Internet pornography who secretly signed up for memberships on adult-oriented Web sites in the past few months may be in for a shock -- some of their[B] personal information, including e-mail addresses, may have been compromised by a security breach....A New Jersey company called Too Much Media, which supplies the software tracking system used by hundreds of adult sites, has reported that a list of its clients' user names and passwords was stolen.[/B] The company said no credit card information has been stolen. .."tens of thousands" of users' personal data may have been accessed....[B]The breach has raised serious alarm in the world of adult-oriented Web sites, with many concerned about the effect on customers if they learn that their most secret transactions are not so secret after all. [/B]
"It's supposed to be a hush-hush transaction," said Chad Belville, a Phoenix-based lawyer who represents many adult industry clients, and is involved in an unrelated court case against Too Much Media. "There's already a hesitation to use your credit card online, and even more hesitation on a porn site, and this is going to make sales more difficult."...[B]Too Much Media supplies an administrative software program called NATS, for Next-Generation Administration and Tracking Software.[/B] The site lists scores of clients, including Porn Kings, Pornstar Dollars and Sex Stuff Sells. Many of these are affiliate sites that provide links to other smaller porn purveyors...[B].Too Much Media has been criticized on the online porn industry's discussion forums for waiting to put out the announcement. On one adult trade site, AVN Media Network, several clients claim that the NATS system may have been breached for as long as a year. [/B] http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/01/03/AR2008010303549_pf.html
[B]Why would Too Much Media wait over a year to announce the security breach, and why would hackers prefer to harvest email addresses and passwords as opposed to credit card data? Well, if the company is being used to facilitate a large scale blackmailing operation of wealthy individuals and public figures, then it wouldn't be in their primary interest to do either. [/B] [B]Again and again, the story that emerges is that adult entertainment companies connected to Manwin aka Mindgeek have been subjected to hacking “attacks”, from Digital Playground to Youporn to a large number of sites connected to Too Much Media. And that doesn't even touch on the psychopathic hackers behind the realpornwikileaks project, which is closely connected to the Free Speech Coalition. Let's not forget that the FSC gave Manwin a philanthropy award. [/B]
Now, given Manwin's established history of collaborating with criminal syndicates, as well as its owner Fabian Thylmann's conviction for tax evasion, doesn't it seem probable that [B]there is a network of individuals connected to Manwin who are coordinating the attacks, then attributing them to an outside group of hackers?[/B] This would be a nearly identical strategy to that taken by Sean Tompkins, Mike Stack and Michael Whiteacre and others associated with the realpornwikileaks page when they attempted to blame their own identity theft, cybercrime and invasion of privacy on Donny Long in order to deflect attention away from their own actions.
More from Monica Foster:
Monica Foster relates at the start of the webcast how Donny Long essentially revolutionized the Los Angeles porn industry by launching his website xxxfilmjobs - a website which many of his competitors may have wanted to control or destroy. Monica outlines how the Free Speech Coalition (FSC) may have "set up" Donny Long as the "fall guy" for PornWikiLeaks due to Pornwikileaks leading to the closure of AIM, which led to the formation of the APHSS which is controlled by the FSC who in turn has been primarily funded by Manwin.--MF http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLE55s1jRKk
[B]The NATS software developed by Manwin owner Fabian Thylmann seems quite similar in purpose to Promis software, a people-tracking database that was used by international intelligence agencies for espionage purposes. Is NATS being used by hackers within the sex industry as part of a wide scale blackmailing operation targeting public figures and wealthy individuals? All that would be required would be for Manwin-connected porn sites to install tracking software that could keep track of users via use of a sophisticated database, allowing for domain name owners to effectively target influential people who could then be extorted and/or blackmailed into political or financial maneuvers.[/B]
More on PROMIS via Canada Free Press:
The so called PROMIS affair would never have happened if the software invented by an American computer specialist, Mr. William A. Hamilton, had been a technical failure. But this case management and data mining software, developed in the early 1980s by a small Washington D.C. company, Inslaw Inc., had proven itself to be a perfect intelligence tool. Originally made for the Department of Justice to help the country's prosecutor offices in their case management, it drew the attention of corrupt officials and of Israeli Intelligence.
Stolen by ruse from its owner, Inslaw Inc., the software was hacked and provided with a "trap door", a sort of a Trojan Horse hacker's trick, that enabled the retrieval of information from the foreign intelligence services and banks it had been sold to... "blowback" from the U.S. Government's theft of PROMIS in 1982 soon turned into a series of painful losses for U.S. national security, into criminal financial benefits for corrupt officials, and into intelligence "scoops" for the secret services of adversaries. "It's far worse than Watergate"--commented former U.S. Attorney General and Inslaw counsel Elliot Richardson...The history of this world-famous computer software goes back a quarter of a century, and its applications by intelligence, organized crime and terrorist organizations began almost from the start.
The software helped the United States win the Cold War against the Soviet Union, but it also served the Russian mafia, Saddam Hussein's regime, Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda, and an unspecified number of foreign spies and criminals....The Soviet KGB purchased PROMIS from Robert Maxwell, but they also [later] received a copy (together with the Trojan Horse secret) from Robert Hanssen, a spy planted in a most sensitive office of the FBI. ...Using the same PROMIS software, purchased from Russia, Saddam Hussein and members of his regime could shift huge sums of money undetected through the banking system.....In the mid-1990s, Chinese Military Intelligence (PLA-2) organized their own hackers department, which [exploited] PROMIS [database systems] [in the] Los Alamos and Sandia national laboratories to steal U.S. nuclear secrets...
Mike South writes:
I reported a while back about Manwin/MindGeek cleaning out the legal department, Turns out it was only figuratively accurate, they did fire the Chief Legal Officer. Many thought this guy was on the way out for a long time so it wasn’t a big surprise but the motivation to finally pull the trigger on him appears to have come as a result of the RedTube merger.
What is somewhat interesting is who they brought in to replace him
Meet Anthony Penhale
Obviously Mr Penhale doesn’t fit the “bro club” image of most of Manwin/MindGeeks Management, so far as I know he has no ties to Matt Keez, Ouissam Yousef or Stefane Manos The original (and some say still) real owners of Manwin/MindGeek back when it was Mansef and under federal Indictment here in the US for International money laundering, a business that from the looks of things they never strayed far from.
Penhale was employed by one of Canada’s most prestigious law firms, Heenan Blaikie LLP. Heenan Blaikie quickly collapsed stemming from a “loss of trust” in management over international business activities including dubious forays into Africa, where former partner Jacques Bouchard and former prime minister Jean Chrétien lobbied governments on behalf of clients.
Over the next couple of years many of the attorneys left Heenan Blaikie over dealings like these and with the likes of Zimbabwean strongman Robert Mugabe.
You can read the whole story here:
I find the mention of arms dealing to be interesting, this is not the first time that Manwin/Mansef/MindGeek has been tied to arms deals. See http://www.mikesouth.com/mike-south-commentary/who-are-constantine-luchian-and-vasilis-kailis-6732/
Penhale wasn’t one of the partners that left Heen Blaikie early on, he hung in to the bitter end indicating that he had no problems with the dealings that ended up undermining the firm’s credibility.
Manwin/MindGeeg/Mansef had a relationship in the past with Heenan Blaikie what interests me is Penhales areas of expertise (It aint copyright law).
“Mr. Penhale was named partner at Heenan Blaikie in 2010, and was practicing corporate law as well as securities and mergers and acquisitions.
He was focusing his practice including financial markets, finance and corporate governance, operations and closure provisions.
Penhale is a member of the Advisory Committee of the Toronto Stock Exchange, and has been recognized as one of Canada’s leading lawyers in corporate law and securities editions in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 “The Best Lawyers in Canada “.
It also appears in the 2010 and 2012 “Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory” as “repeatedly recommended” in the areas of corporate finance and securities.”
Hmmm…. securities and mergers and acquisitions, financial markets, finance and corporate governance, operations and closure provisions.
Mansef/Manwin/MindGeek has gotten very tight lipped lately, I dont get as much info as I once did leaking out of there but it is clear that employees are still quite unhappy:
“Just search for “Manwin” on this site… They are trying to hide their history; but nothings changed…
There is enough information about this company here. I worked at MindGeek (formerly Manwin) for slightly more than two years then was a part of that huge (over 100 employees) lay off which they made in October 2013. A month later they renamed the company, then received new investment. Now they are hiring again! Weird strategy isn’t it? Their HR is severely lacking skills. The employees they hiring are sometime hard to understand not only to work with. Still there are some bright heads, not many, mostly among those who were hired 4-6 yrs ago by former HR staff/management. If you’re talented, energetic and plan to grow, then don’t waste your time, forget it. Nepotism and lack of management skills are the diseases of this business. If you just need a job and paycheck, and don’t mind to have a porn company in your CV, then good luck. For more information/opinions about MindGeek search for “Manwin” here. There are over 70+ reviews.”
This indicates that there is a systematic house cleaning going on there and that it is not over. If you work for a Manwin Company and wish to send me info please remember Do NOT send me email from any company computer or network, they can and will sniff you out. Use a personal computer (not one owned by Manwin), a burner email account and public or your own home internet connection.
I want to hear from you but I don’t want it to cause problems for you.
More on Mansef/Manwin/MindGeek as it develops. There are things happening in China and with Copyright Law tha may throw a wrench into the companies main revenue generation engine (piracy and tube sites)
Mike South comments on how Pornwikileaks has access to porn performers' legal names through PASS, the performer database utilized by Kink.com and the FSC:
http://www.mikesouth.com/scumbags/pass-is-leaking-your-real-name-to-pwl-10522/ PASS Is Leaking Your Real Name To PWL
By Mike South
May 30th, 2014
I have been watching this closely, as you all know PWL is back and they are getting the info of new people in the biz that would clearly never have tested at AIM. I was skeptical of claims that it was coming from PASS at first.
But Someone unconnected to the industry requested a producers login and got one with no questions asked, they then used it to get every single name in the PASS database and for proof, sent it to me.
So it seems pretty clear to me that PASS is at the very least a huge problem and is quite likely how Donny Long is getting the info on brand new performers that have been very careful to protect that info.
I feel at this point that it is clearly the responsibility of The FSC to address this problem and to take action to get the domain shut down permanently.
What do you think? http://www.mikesouth.com/manwin/there-is-a-systematic-house-cleaning-going-on-at-manwinmindgeek-10581/
The Free Speech Coalition's connection to hacker groups is demonstrated yet again by FSC Board Member Peter Acworth's employment of Wkileaks and TOR network member Jacob Applebaum in Kink.com's IT department. The TOR network is an online anonymity network used to evade surveillance. In reality, TOR traffic is widely regarded as being more closely monitored than normal, unencrypted internet traffic because of its association with illegal activity. More from wikipedia:
“Tor can also be used for anonymous defamation, unauthorized leaks of sensitive information and copyright infringement, the distribution of illegal sexual content (and has indeed been explicitly required by one such criminal enterprise), the selling of controlled substances, money laundering, credit card fraud, and identity theft; furthermore, the black market which utilizes the Tor infrastructure operates, at least in part, in conjunction with Bitcoin. Ironically, Tor has been used by criminal enterprises, hacktivism groups, and law enforcement agencies at cross purposes, sometimes simultaneously; likewise, agencies within the U.S. government variously fund Tor (the U.S. State Department), the National Science Foundation, and (via the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which itself partially funded Tor until October 2012), Radio Free Asia, and seek to subvert it.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tor_%28anonymity_network%29#Controversy_over_illegal_activities
[B]Former Kink employee and key member of the Tor Project, Jacob Applebaum, has openly promoted the decriminalization of child pornograghy, stating “The production of the content is not the issue, actually.That’s not… Just a minor clarification – if, for example, you have abused a child and Andy took a picture of this as proof, I don’t think Andy should be prosecuted...Whether or not there are pictures is… is almost irrelevant.” [/B] That quotes comes from a conversation between Applebaum, Julian Assange and online anonymity rights advocate Jeremie Zimmerman. Here is a partial transcript of that conversation via Wikileaks:
There’s one thing to… to do is to go the servers, to disable the servers, to identify… identify the people who uploaded the content in order to identify the people who produced the content, who abused their children in the first place. And whenever there is a network of people, a commercial network and so on, go and arrest the people, and when we… we pass laws – and we have one in France – and you have an administrative authority from the Minister of Interior that decide which websites will be blocked access to. When we decide those laws, we remove an incentive to the investigative services to go and find the people who do the bad stuff by saying ‘Oh, we just remove the access to the bad stuff’, like we put a hand on… in front of the eyes of someone looking at the problem, therefore we solved the problem. So, just from that perspective, I think… I think it is… it is enough to describe it like this – where we all agree that we should remove those images from the internet.
I’m sorry, I just… I’m squirming over here, it’s so frustrating to hear the argument that you’re making. I want to throw up, right? Because what you just did is you said ‘I want to use my position of power to assert my authority over other people, I want to erase history’. And, you know, I mean maybe I’m an extremist in this case – and in many other cases, I’m sure – but I’m just… I’m just going to go out on a limb here, you know. This is actually an example of where erasing history does a disservice. Right, it turns out that with the internet we learned that there’s an epidemic in society of child abuse. That’s what we learned with this… with this child pornography issue – you know, I think it’s better to call it child exploitation – we see evidence of this. Covering it up, erasing it is, I think, a travesty to do that because, in fact, you can learn so much about society as a whole. For example, you can learn – and I mean, you know, I’m obviously never going to have a career in politics after I finish this sentence, but I mean, just to clear about this, right? – you learn, for example, who is producing it, you learn about the people that are victimised, it is impossible for people to ignore the problem.
It means that you have to…… you have to start searching out the actual… the cause that creates this, which is the exploiters of the children..making sure that we live in a world where it’s possible to erase some stuff and not other stuff, creating these administrative bodies for censorship and for policing – that’s a slippery slope which, as we have seen, has turned directly to copyright....Like, for example Polaroid, you know, when they built the Swinger camera, this instant camera for talking pictures, people started to take abusive pictures with those as well, right. But the answer is not to destroy a medium, or to police that medium, it is when you find evidence to prosecute the crimes that the medium has documented. It is not to weaken that medium, it is not to cripple society as a whole over this thing.....The production of the content is not the issue, actually.
That’s not… Just a minor clarification – if, for example, you have abused a child and Andy took a picture of this as proof, I don’t think Andy should be prosecuted.....Whether or not there are pictures is… is almost irrelevant. …”
The argument that criminalizing the production of child pornography requires an infringement upon civil liberties is the same argument used to block legislation that would protect victims of revenge porn. There are presently few laws to protect people whose home address and place of employment are posted alongside pornographic photos by spiteful former partners. People's lives and careers have been ruined because of revenge porn and the few states who do criminalize it only classify revenge porn as a misdemeanor. In some cases, the photos on revenge porn websites are not actual nude photographs but instead a photoshopped image of a porn star's body attached to the victim's head.
What the lack of legislation about revenge porn effectively does is to erase the idea of consent so that it's legally permissible to force virtually anyone into pornography. In part because of anti-censorship lobbying by groups including the ACLU, in many states it is perfectly legal to produce revenge porn about an ex-partner and completely ruin that person's life. While freedom of the press is undeniably an important civil rights issue, laws prohibiting revenge porn are not a legitimate example of censorship because of the psychological trauma and invasion of privacy revenge porn can cause. Here's more about libertarian interpretations of “freedom of speech” from a blog post titled “Cyber-libertarians for Child Pornography”. Jacob Applebaum is referenced in the article on account of his view that the production of child pornography should be decriminalized.
In a discussion between co-idealogues Jacob Applebaum also known as "ioerror" asked if people are "horrified by how the US treats people like me?"...child pornography is sanctioned by those behind Tor....Falkvinge's call for child pornography legalization received a warm welcome in hacktivist and cyberlibertarian circles.
Certain cyber-libertarians argue that child pornography laws could and/or are being used by copyright nasties to make it easier to control file sharing. Which is an immoral argument as it places one's ability to download dvd rips above victims of child pornography....Filtering images of child rape helps internet freedoms by damaging arguments for a general filter.
Eric Raymond is a celebrity in hacker subculture who argued that "child porn must be de-criminalized - otherwise, the censorship that child porn laws legitimize will have worse effects than the porn.".
After their daughter Rehtaeh's suicide the Parsons family called for harsher laws against child porn and stalking which Hacktivist guru Nadim Kobeissi described as "internet freedoms" which in his view should not be limited without a hint of empathy for the family, only scorn. Kobeissi's website "is being used by pedophiles to spread child pornography on the internet. Nadim Kobeissi knows about this, but is deliberately turning a blind eye." In other tweets he expressed opposition to efforts against child pornography viewing them only as attempts to impose 'censorship.' http://nicknipclose.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/cyber-libertarians-for-child-pornography.html
more on Kobeissi here: http://uloadrexposed.wordpress.com/2011/10/22/nadim-kobeissi-kaepora-uloadr-kp-report-abuse/