A Really Big Loop Hole
Convicted child rapist Weldon Gilbert, 50, of Washington State made headlines when, by deciding to represent himself, he was legally given access to all the evidence against him — including the home videos he made of himself sadistically raping young boys he had lured to his home. When interviewed, Pierce County prosecutor Mark Lindquist told reporters, "In my 16 years as a prosecutor, this is one of the most absurd and maddening results I've ever heard of, and this is the first time I'm aware of this happening in Pierce County," Lindquist, continued "We don't have to turn over the guns used as evidence for a defendant ... and it's absurd that we have to turn over the child porn as evidence."
The Tacoma area millionaire claimed that the videos, which depicted him in sexual acts with 17 victims, one as young as 10, were not child porn, "It's not. Even if it was child porn or of sexual interest or whatever, it certainly wouldn't be the venue in which to view it," he said. "That's the whole reason I'm fighting the charges. It's obviously not child rape. And it will be proven not to be child rape." Gilbert conceded that, "It was activity that was wrong, but not illegal."
At his trial, witnesses said that Gilbert, who is also a pilot, would lure boys with rides to exotic places on his various airplanes and seaplanes, give them alcohol and sadistically spank their bare buttocks. In several cases, prosecutors said, Gilbert allegedly engaged the teens in masturbation, oral sex and anal sex. He molested over 12 children before the older brothers of two his victims blew the whistle on him. Before his case could come to trial, Gilbert pleaded guilty in April, 2009, to 31 counts of production of child pornography, two counts of transporting a minor across state lines to engage in sexual activity; and two counts of obstruction of justice. He apologized to the families and the victims. He was given the maximum sentence of 25 years. Next Slide: Innovative Thinking