Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin are two agents of human rights activism in the United States. They are the founders of an organization known as Frontera Fund which funds the operations of human, civil and immigrants’ rights in the state of Arizona. Frontera Fund was established after they won a case battle involving the county of Maricopa.
Their human rights were acted against by the then Sheriff of the county, Joe Arpaio and they, therefore, moved to court to be compensated for the torture they were taken through. They were compensated $3.75 million which have been spent on philanthropy and human rights activism. In this case, they were arrest and detained for one night and were released the following day after public pressure on the county administration to release them. No charges were opened against them. Read more: Connect with Michael Lacey on LinkedIn
In 2018, they are back in courts again. This time, it is a different case altogether. They are facing charges for money laundering and 93 other counts of breaking the law. The government seized Backpage.com, a website they previously owned but had sold it in 2015, for allegations of advocating for “sex trafficking” among other illegalities. The FBI arrested the two on the same day the website was seized, and all its offices searched by the agents.
Jim Larkin is still in detention while Lacey is currently out. They are however going to face charges in June when the trial starts. Interestingly, the CEO of the company right now was not arrested in the swoop which one could have possibly mistaken for a hunt of a drug kingpin.
Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin have been advocating for freedom and right of all human beings in the United States to be respected. In 2017, they had opened a new site known as “Front Page Confidential: to advocate for the First Amendment.
The two are passionate about defending the rights of the minorities in the country which in many cases are one bearing the brunt of oppression from government agents. The cases facing them is just another case of the government trying to oppress their rights of the people and the freedom of speech. They remain hopeful that the charges will eventually be dropped.
Lacey and Larkin have been advocates of human rights in Arizona for the last five decades. Since 1960s while at the Arizona State University, they have acted on cases of human rights violations mostly by government agents seriously. The case of Former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is a good example of the dedication they place in their duties. They exposed this rogue officer for all the illegal actions he had taken against the immigrants in his county.
Joe Arpaio conducted himself unprofessionally and oversaw the worst treatment of immigrants in the country. There were cases of killings, torture and illegal incarceration of immigrants in the county. In a rather unfortunate turn of events, Joe Arpaio was released and freed of any charges after President Trump gave him court pardon.