Pete Wesson child pornography trial enters testimony phase in Lauderdale County

FLORENCE, Ala. – A former Florence business owner is on trial this week, accused of producing and sending child pornography. First arrested in late 2016, William “Pete” Wesson has been indicted twice on child porn charges.

Testimony is underway in the trial of 66-year-old Pete Wesson. Wesson claims he was helping law enforcement investigate the trading of child pornography; however, prosecutors say the trouble with that is, no law enforcement knew about his activities.

On Tuesday, agents with Homeland Security explained to jurors just how they came across Pete Wesson. They used his computer's address to track him to Florence Alabama. In 2016, agents turned their investigation into child pornography over to Florence police.

After serving a search warrant at Wesson’s home, files containing child pornography were located on computer hard drives. Wesson has been indicted on 155 charges. They include dissemination of child pornography, possession of obscene matter containing visual depictions of persons under 17, and production of obscene matter.

Wesson’s attorney told jurors during opening statements that Wesson downloaded some files which contained child pornography. He then called the police and told them about it.

According to his defense attorney, Wesson was told by police to write down the sites in a log and delete the files.

Prosecutors say he didn’t delete the files, and he never gave police a log of the websites he found them on. Testimony is expected to continue on Thursday.

William “Pete” Wesson remains in custody following his latest indictment of charges related to child pornography in January.

Investigators in this case said they have no reason to believe any local children were depicted in the obscene matter.