MySpace Sued Over Rape Case

The site is accused of being a breeding ground for sexual predators

By on 21 Jun 2006, 13:48 GMT
Following the tobacco industry and the fast-food chains, a new lawsuit threatens to redefine the boundaries of corporate responsibilities toward its customers as an integer part of American justice. It all started when a 14 year old Texas girl was approached and courted via her profile on a MySpace chat room by Peter Solis age 19. He convinced her that he was a senior and a former member of the high school football team in order to get her to exchange e-mails with him, phone numbers and later to meet in person. The girl ended up being sexually assaulted by Solis who now faces up to 20 years of prison.

After the episode, the girl and her mother considered guilty not only Peter Solis but also the medium that facilitated the meeting. MySpace was consequently sued for not offering any protection to underage users in order to gain financial benefits from the publicity that targets them, restricting in no way chat room access or contacts between mature users and minors.

Losing the lawsuit will mean a potential 30 million dollars bill representing the damages claimed by the girl and her mother. The episode is not a singular one in the site's history. In the past two other girls age 13 and 14 were victims of similar assaults after meeting men on MySpace.

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