Idaho Falls Man Pleads Guilty to Possessing More Than 600 Images of Child Pornography
POCATELLO – James Brown, 50, of Idaho Falls, Idaho, pleaded guilty today in United States District Court in Pocatello to one count of possession of sexually explicit images of minors, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced. Brown was charged by information on February 12, 2013.
According to the plea agreement, Brown admitted that on August 15, 2012, he possessed a laptop computer with more than 600 sexually explicit images of minors. Many of the images depicted sexual activity between adults and children under the age of 12. When Brown was interviewed by special agents of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, he admitted to possessing “thousands” of images of sexually explicit conduct, approximately half of which he estimated were images of minor children.
Authorities were alerted to Brown’s illegal activities in April 2011, when the Federal Bureau of Investigation learned that Brown’s e-mail account had been used to send an image of child pornography to another person. An investigation led authorities to suspect the illegal activity was being conducted using the computer network of Brown’s employer, ON Semiconductor. Once notified, the company promptly undertook an internal investigation and cooperated fully with law enforcement’s investigation. Brown’s employment was terminated in conjunction with his confession to the authorities.
The charge of possessing sexually explicit images of minors is punishable by up to ten years in prison, a maximum fine of $250,000, and a minimum term of five years up to lifetime supervised release. The government is seeking forfeiture of the computer equipment used in the offense.
Sentencing is set for June 17, 2013, before Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill at the federal courthouse in Pocatello.
The case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”
Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) is a collaborative effort by federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and communities to prevent and deter gun violence.