If America making its annual descent into consumerism-inspired madness wasn’t enough to depress the hell out of you today, there’s this: Ian Watkins, lead singer of Lostprophets — a Welsh emo band probably best known for the songs “Rooftops” and “Last Train Home” — has pleaded guilty to a host of pedophilia-related crimes, including the attempted rape of a baby.
The Guardian‘s story on Watkins and his crimes is one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever read. Consider yourself warned.
Detectives in south Wales, where Watkins lived, have been working with other forces and agencies across Britain and have liaised with Interpol and the department for homeland security in the US, where Lostprophets toured extensively.
Watkins and two female fans in their 20s, who cannot be named, had been due to stand trial at Cardiff crown court for more than 20 offences, including allegations involving the women’s children, a boy and a girl. He had vociferously denied the accusations and loyal fans had attended court to show their support.
But on Tuesday – after jurors had been warned they would have to examine some very disturbing images and arrangements had been made for them to receive counselling after the trial – Watkins and the women pleaded guilty to almost all the charges against them.
Watkins, whose former band has sold around 3.5m albums, admitted 13 offences over five years, including attempting to rape one of the children and conspiring to rape the other.
The court was told that the two women sexually abused their children at the behest of Watkins and were prepared to make the children available to him for sex. The prosecution said the attempted rape happened while Watkins was staying at a four-star hotel in west London shortly after appearing on BBC Radio 1.
Christopher Clee QC, prosecuting, branded Watkins a “determined and committed paedophile”. The court heard of one exchange in which a woman offered him a “summer of child porn”. He replied: “Hell yes, baby.”
According to the Guardian, Watkins’ defense has been that he was addicted to crack and crystal meth and that he didn’t recall even committing the horrific crimes he was accused of. But the evidence against him was pretty damning — evidence that included secret video that “featured videos of sexual abuse, including the attempted rape.”