San Diego porn businessman arrested in Spain

SAN DIEGO (HPD) — The founder of a California-based pornographic emporium that forced young women to film pornographic videos has been arrested in Spain, three years after he went on the run facing federal sex trafficking charges, the FBI said.

Michael James Pratt was on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list. The Spanish National Police arrested him on Wednesday in Madrid, the FBI’s San Diego office said in a statement issued Thursday.

Pratt, a native of New Zealand, will be detained in Spain until he is extradited to San Diego to face charges of sex trafficking, sex trafficking of minors, production of child pornography and conspiracy to launder money.

Pratt, 40, is the founder of the now-defunct website GirlsDoPorn in San Diego. In 2019, he and others were charged in San Diego with sex crimes after being sued by 22 women who said they were victims of fraud and breach of employment contract.

The women said they were given alcohol and marijuana before being pressured to sign a contract without being able to read it. Some reported being sexually assaulted and confined to hotel rooms until filming ended.

A judge ruled in favor of the women and imposed a $12.7 million fine against Pratt, Matthew Isaac Wolfe and a pornographic producer and actor named Ruben Andre Garcia.

Wolfe, who handled the company’s day-to-day operations, finances and marketing, pleaded guilty earlier this year to one federal count of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking. He has not been sentenced.

The other defendants also pleaded guilty. Garcia was sentenced to 20 years and cameraman Theodore Gyi was sentenced to four.

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