Wagner seeks federal investigation into OnlyFans financial agreements

U.S. Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO) last week requested a federal investigation into the financial agreements made by OnlyFans, a London-based internet content subscription service that allows content creators to earn money from “fans,” who are the users who subscribe to their content.

Throughout 2021, OnlyFans.com has been linked to multiple sex crimes committed against women and children, according to an Oct. 21 letter Rep. Wagner sent to Himamauli Das, acting director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).

“As public officials, we must do everything in our power to ensure children and vulnerable individuals are protected from harm and sexual exploitation,” wrote the congresswoman. “The financial sector plays an integral role in combating human trafficking and other criminal activity, and I am gravely concerned about ‘assurances’ made between OnlyFans and its financial partners.”

Specifically, Rep. Wagner called for an investigation by FinCEN into those agreements with a focus on the assurances that preceded OnlyFans’ decision to continue allowing the sale of sexually explicit content on its website, according to her letter.

She cited numerous examples of “depraved crimes” with which OnlyFans is “indisputably connected,” according to her letter. “Not only is the prevalence of these horrific crimes shocking and unacceptable, media investigations have also highlighted a possible tolerance of this illegal content by OnlyFans,” Rep. Wagner wrote.

As part of FinCEN’s role in enforcing the Bank Secrecy Act, the lawmaker asked Das to conduct an investigation that provides answers to several questions, including which financial institutions were involved in OnlyFans agreements, what specific assurances OnlyFans secured from these financial partners, and whether OnlyFans would report instances of illegal content on its site to ensure the financial institutions were protected from legal action. 

“If an agreement was made between OnlyFans and financial institutions to shield businesses from scrutiny or liability for sex crimes involving OnlyFans, it would constitute a severe breach of public trust and possible violation of federal anti-money laundering statutes and guidelines,” wrote Rep. Wagner, who serves as Vice Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee.