ATLANTA – A pilot from Washington state was arrested in Atlanta this week on charges he sexually assaulted at least 20 boys at his home over a six-year period and videotaped much of the abuse.
Police and FBI agents arrested Weldon Marc Gilbert, 47, in Atlanta on Thursday and charged him with nine sex crimes, including child rape, child molestation and sexual exploitation of a minor. The Lake Tapps, Wash., resident and pilot for the United Parcel Service was in jail in Atlanta late Friday awaiting extradition to Washington.
Pierce County, Wash., sheriff's spokesman Ed Troyer said more charges are likely. Police are reviewing more than 100 videotapes and DVDs found at Gilbert's home, many of which contain "very disturbing graphic images," Troyer said.
"We just started looking through the tapes, and we've already seen 20 different victims," Troyer told The News Tribune in Tacoma, Wash. "Kids are crying out for help and in pain in some of the videos."
Mike Mangeot, a spokesman for the Atlanta-based UPS Airlines, said the criminal case is an "unfortunate situation" that has nothing to do with the company.
"It's a personal matter," he said.
Mangeot declined to say how long Gilbert had been employed at UPS.
Police believe Gilbert used a helicopter to give rides to some of the young boys, who range in age from 12 to 17, Troyer said. Afterward, Gilbert would take them to his house, get them intoxicated, tie them down, beat them and perform sexual acts on them with a tape recorder rolling, Troyer said.
Investigators began looking into Gilbert on Tuesday after two men reported they suspected their younger brothers were being molested by Gilbert.
A alleged victim, now 18, told police he was molested by Gilbert beginning in 2001 after his father died. The teen also gave police a videotape this week showing Gilbert abusing the alleged victim's 12-year-old brother.
Gilbert was in Atlanta for UPS training, Troyer said.