Mark Alan Pfeifer Sentenced in U.S. District Cour
Bill Mercer, United States Attorney for the District of Montana, announced today that during a federal court session in Billings, on January 22, 2009, before Chief U.S. District Judge Richard F. Cebull, MARK ALAN PFEIFER, a 33-year-old resident of Decatur, Illinois, appeared for sentencing. PFEIFER was sentenced to a term of:
- Prison: 180 months
- Special Assessment: $200
- Forfeiture: computer equipment
- Supervised Release: 7 years
PFEIFER was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to advertisement and distribution of child pornography.
In an Offer of Proof filed by the United States, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:
On September 14, 2006, an FBI agent in Billings was on the Internet looking for
A constantly growing server focused on teens. Well sorted and I'm always adding new pics and movies. Send full series pics or large movies for extra credit and/or leech."
The FBI agent uploaded an unreadable, encrypted file to "dreako's" f-serve and received credit that allowed him to download one graphic image file of child erotica and six movie files of child pornography. While the images were distributed to him, he captured "dreako's" IP address and ultimately identified him as PFEIFER of Decatur, Illinois. The agent then drafted a search warrant for PFEIFER'S home and forwarded it to the FBI office in Decatur.
On October 27, 2006, agents served a search warrant on PFEIFER'S residence in Illinois. The search team seized numerous items of computer equipment and related paraphernalia and questioned PFEIFER about his f-serve. PFEIFER admitted operating an f-serve to advertise and distribute child pornography. Forensic analysis found over 5,000 graphic image files and 32 video files containing child pornography.
Because there is no parole in the federal system, the "truth in sentencing" guidelines mandate that PFEIFER will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, PFEIFER does have the opportunity to earn a sentence reduction for "good behavior." However, this reduction will not exceed 15% of the overall sentence.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Marcia K. Hurd prosecuted the case for the United States.
The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and the Billings Police Department.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood. In February 2006, the Department of Justice launched Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys' Offices, 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 identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov/.