Previously convicted sex offender in Evansville sentenced to 25 years in federal prison for new offenses

Crime

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EVANSVILLE, Ind (WEHT) – An Evansville man was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison on Thursday for the production and distribution of sexually explicit material involving minors.

According to court documents, an individual contacted the Evansville Police Department in February 2018 to report that someone was using her name and photographs to set up social media accounts to contact and communicate with underage girls to receive explicit photographs. After further investigation, agents executed a search warrant at the residence of Wesley E. Trafford, 35. Authorities say they found evidence that Trafford was creating fake accounts online to obtain nude images of minor victims and distribute those images to others.

Trafford had previously been convicted of child exploitation in September 2014 in Vanderburgh County and was a registered sex offender at the time authorities say he committed the federal offenses.

“Every parent and child should be aware of the dangers lurking online. Often, the person on the other side of the screen is not who they pretend to be, and in fact may be a serial sexual predator seeking additional minor victims. Recidivist sex offenders against children are a particular federal priority, and my office will work tirelessly to hold them accountable,” said U.S. Attorney Zachary A. Myers. “The serious consequences imposed today are an important part of protecting the public and demonstrating to would-be offenders that they will be found, and they will be brought to justice.”

The Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated the case along with the Indiana State Police and the Evansville Police Department.

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