A British man with dual citizenship pleaded guilty Wednesday to traveling to the Coachella Valley to try and have sex with pre-teen boys, officials announced.
Paul Charles Wilkins, 70, of Littleport in East Cambridgeshire, England, entered his guilty plea to transportation of child pornography, and agreed to a 13-year prison sentence and a lifetime of supervised release, the United States Department of Justice reported in a news release.
At the court hearing, Wilkins admitted he came to the United States from the United Kingdom in January to have sex with two brothers, ages 10 and 12. He also admitted in February he tried to solicit a 9-year-old boy for anal intercourse in exchange for $250, according to prosecutors.
“This defendant’s conduct was extremely dangerous,” United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker said in a released statement. “He sought to have sex with another boy immediately after his original arrangements to have sex with the two pre-teen boys fell apart. It is critical, therefore, that today’s guilty plea will keep defendant in prison for well-over a decade.”
Prosecutors also added Wilkins admitted his computer had child pornography in it, and that he brought child pornography with graphic sexual images of young boys into the United States from the United Kingdom.
“This defendant learned firsthand the fate that awaits predators who come to this country to sexually exploit our children,” Joseph Macias, special agent in charge for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations in Los Angeles, said. “HSI special agents continue to work tirelessly to identify individuals who’re engaged in this reprehensible practice and ensure they’re held accountable for their actions. Above all, our collaborative efforts have prevented countless children from falling prey to these traveling pedophiles, who wrongly believe that purchasing an airline ticket and boarding a plane puts them out of the reach of the law.”
Wilkins was originally charged in a four-count indictment for traveling with the intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct, attempted sex trafficking of children, transportation of child pornography and possession of child pornography.
Wilkins remains behind bars without bond and is scheduled to be sentenced in January 2017.