Law enforcement must target hookers, not Craigslist


Tom Dart's crusade against Craigslist appears to have come to a close. The Cook County, Ill., sheriff sought to have the online classified site's erotic section shut down, filing suit in federal court to close what he called the "single largest source of prostitution in the nation." He didn't get much help from the judge, however, who dismissed the lawsuit, according to the San Francisco affiliate of NBC.

Dart filed the suit earlier this year, claiming that "Craigslist unabashedly facilitates prostitution, then ultimately makes a profit from it."

U.S. District Judge John F. Grady didn't see it that way. "Sheriff Dart may continue to use Craigslist's Web site to identify and pursue individuals who post allegedly unlawful content," the federal judge wrote in his ruling, "But he cannot sue Craigslist for their conduct." The net result is that law enforcement officials can use Craigslist to investigate prostitution schemes, but the website itself shouldn't be the target.