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Las Colinas Online Dating Service Wins Lawsuit

Date: 2006-10-05

A Las Colinas-based online dating service is claiming victory in the battle to keep its clients safe. settled a landmark lawsuit against a man who lied about his criminal past. They say they achieved that, in part, because their competitive edge has always been their promise.

"We cannot guarantee that a criminal cannot get on our site. But I will guarantee that they will be sorry - very, very sorry - that they did," says CEO Herb Vest.

The online dating service is the only one that conducts criminal background checks and requires potential members to take an online oath, of sorts.

"Before a person comes on, what they have to do is affirmatively state whether or not they've had a felony conviction and whether or not they're married," Vest said. officials say 66-year-old Robert Wells lied. Wells is a convicted child molester, but he lives in a county in Northern California that doesn't release criminal data to all companies.

So when Wells slipped through’s safety net, the company sued for fraud. The settlement requires wells to pay monetary damages to, complete community service, and never use an online dating service again.

Vest says that should make all online daters feel safer. "It was a huge victory, I think, not only for, but mainly for our members. And peripherally, I believe, to the online dating community in general," Vest said.

Not everyone in the online dating community agrees. Many have said gives members a false sense of security and they say this close call only proves their point.

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