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Huntsville man pleads guilty in federal child sex trafficking case

Billy Edwards accepted a plea agreement.

Posted: Jun 13, 2018 5:14 PM

A Huntsville man will be sentenced in September after pleading guilty in a child sex trafficking case Wednesday, federal prosecutors said.

Billy Edwards, 63, pleaded guilty to charges of commercial sex trafficking, coercion and enticement of a minor to engage in prostitution, and being a convicted felon in possession of firearms.

Edwards was accused of paying a Honduran man in 2014 to have sexual encounters with the man's 15-year-old son. The encounters continued for several months, prosecutors said, until Edwards stopped paying to have them and the boy's father threatened to go to police if Edwards didn't give him money.

Edwards said in his plea agreement that they agreed on a $20,000 payoff to keep a cell phone with texts about the sexual encounters out of law enforcement's hands, according to prosecutors.

The child told authorities about the sex trafficking in May 2017, and Madison County Sheriff's Office investigators searched Edwards's home in September of that year. They said they found three pistols and a shotgun in the home that Edwards was not allowed to own because of a 2005 felony conviction for conspiracy to commit fraud.

When Edwards is sentenced Sept. 12, he faces anywhere from 10 years to life on the charges.

The child's father is also facing federal charges. His trial date has not been set.

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