News and Press Releases

Brian Paul Cossey Sentenced in U.S. District Cour

Monday, February 08, 2010

The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Missoula, on February 5, 2010, before U.S. District Judge Donald W. Molloy, BRIAN PAUL COSSEY, a 39-year-old resident of Kalispell, appeared for sentencing. COSSEY was sentenced to a term of:

  • Prison: 60 months
  • Special Assessment: $100
  • Supervised Release: 10 years

COSSEY was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to receipt of child pornography.

In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Cyndee L. Peterson, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:

Agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement were investigating allegations of child pornography access by users utilizing the peer-to-peer file sharing network. ICE agents in Kalispell received a referral of an IP address which was tracked to COSSEY, who had files previously identified as containing child pornography available for download between February and April 2008.

Agents obtained and executed a search warrant for COSSEY'S residence in Kalispell where they seized two computers.

A forensic examination of the computers resulted in 19 files containing video clips of child pornography. The videos were found on both computers in allocated space in folders used by peer-to-peer clients. One of the files depicted an approximately 8-year-old girl with her hands duct-taped to her ankles while being raped by an adult male and then penetrated by foreign objects.

The forensic examiner also determined the operating system on the hard drives were installed on: October 8, 2002; March 8, 2006; and August 1, 2008.

During the search, COSSEY was interviewed and stated he had been downloading child pornography movies via the Internet "for awhile." COSSEY said he downloaded the child pornography movies for personal sexual gratification.

Because there is no parole in the federal system, the "truth in sentencing" guidelines mandate that COSSEY will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, COSSEY does have the opportunity to earn a sentence reduction for "good behavior." However, this reduction will not exceed 15% of the overall sentence.

The investigation was conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

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



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