Texas AG Arrests Seven MySpace Users

Seven Texas men are among the first to be arrested in a crackdown on MySpace.com users. The men are convicted sex offenders who violated the terms of their parole by using the social networking site. Houston Public Radio's Laurie Johnson reports.

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Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott subpoenaed MySpace to release information for all registered sex offenders who use the website. The investigation is ongoing, but Abbott says they've made seven arrests since the beginning of June.

"These predators are incorrigible. They will stop at nothing in order to try to find their next victim, and that's exactly the kind of platform the internet is providing for them. They can go on to MySpace.com and surf the net and look at MySpace.com as a buffet of children where they can select and target their next victim."

Of the seven arrests, four were here in Houston, two in Austin and one in Dallas. The Attorney General's office has been in talks with MySpace for more than a year trying to gain access to the website's user information.

"We've had a challenge in dealing with MySpace for some time. We keep pushing, pushing, pushing and we are finding that they are beginning to cooperate with us a little bit more."

Abbott says MySpace is the only social networking site providing such information, and as the largest such site it remains the primary focus of the investigation. But Abbott says he believes child predators are using a variety of sites to find victims. The men who were arrested are charged with violating the terms of their parole or probation. Laurie Johnson, Houston Public Radio News.

Bio photo of Laurie Johnson

Laurie Johnson

Local Host, All Things Considered

Laurie Johnson is the Houston host for All Things Considered at KUHF NPR for Houston. Before taking the anchor chair, she worked as a general assignments reporter at KUHF, starting there as an intern in 2002...