The 67-year-old founder and part-owner of Global Blue Technologies was convicted in Corpus Christi of sex trafficking of a minor, prosecutors announced Tuesday.
The jury deliberated for 10 hours before convicting David Wills, now of San Antonio and previously of Rockport and South Padre Island, following a 10-day trial, the office of U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick announced.
The jury heard that from 2012 to 2015, the aquaculture company owner conspired with Maria Losoya and trafficked a young girl beginning when she was only 10 years of age. Losoya and Wills used their cell phones to arrange meetings at several different locations where Wills would sexually assault the victim, prosecutors say.
These included multiple Wills’ residences as well as Losoya’s in Brownsville and hotels and motels in the greater Corpus Christi area, according to a release.
The jury heard testimony that Wills promised to pay for the victim’s college tuition if Losoya allowed him to sexually assault the young girl, prosecutors say.
Wills also reimbursed Losoya for gifts to the victim and expenditures she would otherwise not have been able to afford. These included an iPad, Bose headphones, a flat screen TV, Apple laptop, trampoline, swimming pool and a school trip to Washington D.C., Patrick’s office said in a release.
Wills sexually assaulted the girl multiple times until she reported the case in April 2015. Losoya pleaded guilty in 2017 and testified at trial, according to prosecutors.
The jury also heard from the forensic interviewer who first heard the victim’s outcry, the nurse who first examined her, several state and federal law enforcement officers and an expert witness who testified about Wills’ and Losoya’s cell site information.
An eyewitness also described seeing the victim at a Portland hotel where Wills and Losoya met in March 2014, prosecutors say.
In addition, the jury heard from Wills’ former personal assistant who testified he asked her to hand over a personal computer on the day of the victim’s outcry. He later admitted it was destroyed to prevent law enforcement from seizing and reviewing it, prosecutors say.
Wills, who had a total of 12 attorneys representing him at trial, attempted to convince the jury Losoya only wanted more money and tried to refute cell site location data as well as the nurse’s testimony. They also criticized the victim’s previous statements. Wills took the stand and admitted having an affair with Losoya but denied any sexual involvement with the victim.
The jury heard from multiple defense witnesses attesting to the defendant’s character and successes, while attempting to contradict testimony Losoya and the victim gave.
The jury ultimately returned guilty verdicts on one count of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking, seven counts each of sex trafficking and coercion/enticement, one count of attempted coercion/enticement and one count of conspiracy to obstruct justice.
He faces up life in prison.
U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos presided over the trial. Previously released on bond, Wills was taken into custody following the verdict today where he will remain pending sentencing, which will be set at a later date.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, Brownsville Police Department and Texas Rangers conducted the investigation with the assistance of the FBI.