The saga of former gay male escort website Rentboy.com continued Wednesday when its founder and CEO, Jeffrey Hurant, 51, was indicted by a federal grand jury in Brooklyn on charges of money laundering and promoting prostitution, Reuters reports.
According to The New York Daily News, the indictment contains several new allegations against the now-defunct mega escort website, including a claim that the company was not stringent about verifying escorts who were over the age of 18. It is also alleged Rentboy.com did business with an escort agency indicted in Florida for luring Hungarian men into sex slavery.
"The government's charges against Mr. Hurant are unwarranted," Hurant's lawyer Michael Tremonte said in a statement. "He ran his business openly for nearly 20 years, and it makes no sense to single him out for criminal prosecution. Mr. Hurant plans to contest the charges and looks forward to full vindication at trial."
Rentboy.com, which was founded in 1996, grew to be what authorities are calling the largest online male escort website. The website flew above the radar during its time in business and even presented and hosted an annual escorts awards show called "The Hookies."
According to The News, the indictment also seeks forfeiture of more than $1.5 million seized from Rentboy's Manhattan office and various bank and brokerage accounts. Additionally, authorities intend to permanently seize the Rentboy.com domain name.