Former USC Professor on FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List

The FBI calls a former USC professor a dangerous child predator.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    FBI
    Walter Lee Williams, a former university professor, is wanted for the alleged sexual exploitation of children and traveling abroad for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual acts with children.

    A former University of Southern California professor was added to the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list Monday after being indicted on charges of producing child pornography and engaging in sexual acts with minors.

    Walter Lee Williams, 64, became the 500th person added to the list since its creation in 1950, the agency announced.

    Williams is accused of traveling from Los Angeles to the Philippines in January 2011 to engage in sex acts with two 14-year-old boys and taking sexually explicit pictures of one of them. He allegedly met the two boys online in 2010 and had Internet webcam sessions with them.

    Williams was a tenured professor of anthropology, history and gender studies at USC. According to a profile that has since been removed from the USC website, Williams was a founding editor of the International Gay & Lesbian Review and also taught at the University of California, Los Angeles, in the 1980s.

    The FBI said Williams preys upon boys between ages 14 and 17, many of whom live in economically underdeveloped countries.

    “Because of his status, he has the means and access to children, and that’s what makes him dangerous,” said FBI Special Agent Jeff Yesensky in a video released by the agency. “He preys on the most vulnerable children.”

    Williams was charged in Los Angeles on April 30 with one count of producing child pornography, one count of traveling for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual conduct with a minor and two counts of engaging in illicit sexual conduct in foreign places.

    The FBI is offering a reward of up to $100,000 for information leading directly to Williams’ arrest.

    He is a former Palm Springs resident who has an extensive history of travel through Southeast Asia -- specifically the Philippines -- and may travel to Mexico and Peru, the FBI said. He is also affiliated with the Buddhist Universal Association in Los Angeles.

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