MEPPEN, ILLINOIS, MAN SENTENCED FOR RECEIPT OF CHILD PORNOGRAPHY
A Meppen, Ill.- man was sentenced in federal court in East St. Louis, on July 25, 2011, for Receipt of Child Pornography, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today. Scot J. Baalman, 39, was sentenced to 120 months’ imprisonment, 5 years’ supervised release, ordered to pay a $100 special assessment, and ordered to pay $1,176.00 in restitution. Baalman has been detained since he pled guilty to the offense on March 28, 2011.
“As you know, I have worked very hard in my career, and very hard in my duties as United States Attorney to protect innocent victims of this kind of abuse. I will continue to focus intense prosecutions on those whose actions serve only to damage and to destroy innocent lives!” said United States Attorney Wigginton.
The violation occurred between September 27 and November 2, 2010, when Baalman downloaded visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. The images were discovered after a forensic review was conducted of Baalman’s computer, which had been turned over to authorities by L.B. (because of privacy concerns, due to the nature of the offense, further identification will not be given). L.B. took custody of the computer after finding two close-up photos of a minor’s nude pubic area and vagina. Baalman’s father told Secret Service agents that Baalman admitted to him that he had taken the photographs of the minor that were discovered by L.B. Baalman’s computer also contained a large amount of child erotica, many of which involved prepubescent females.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
The case was investigated by the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Department and the United States Secret Service. The case was assigned to Assistant United States Attorney Angela Scott.