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Informational: Federal Court Arraignments

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, January 24, 2011

The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on January 24, 2011, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Carolyn S. Ostby, the following individuals were arraigned:

LESLIE JON CLAASSEN, a 50-year-old resident of Billings, appeared on a charge of receipt of child pornography. He is currently detained. If convicted of this charge, CLAASSEN faces possible penalties of a mandatory minimum of 15 years in prison and could be sentenced to 40 years, a $250,000 fine and lifetime supervision. Assistant U.S. Attorney Marcia K. Hurd is the prosecutor for the United States. The investigation was a cooperative effort between Billings Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Montana Department of Corrections.

GILBERT GEORGE WALKS, JR., a 48-year-old resident of Crow Agency, appeared on charges of sexual abuse, sexual exploitation of children, possession of child pornography and being felon-in-possession of a firearm. He is currently detained. If convicted of these charges, WALKS faces possible penalties of a mandatory minimum of 25 years in prison and could be sentenced to life, a $250,000 fine and lifetime supervision. Assistant U.S. Attorney Marcia K. Hurd is the prosecutor for the United States. The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The defendants pled not guilty to the charges.

The charge, an indictment, information or complaint, is merely an accusation and all persons named as defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. A pre-trial conference and a trial date will be set and the United States will be required to prove the allegations set forth in the indictment beyond a reasonable doubt.

 

 

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