News and Press Releases

Leslie Jon Claassen Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Cour

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on September 14, 2011, before Chief U.S. District Judge Richard F. Cebull, LESLIE JON CLAASSEN, a 50-year-old resident of Billings, pled guilty to receipt of child pornography. Sentencing has been set for December 14, 2011. He is currently detained.

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

On December 15, 2010, Montana Probation and Parole officers conducted an unannounced home visit on CLAASSEN, who was on state parole for sexual abuse of children out of Hill County in 2005.

CLAASSEN was residing at a local motel in Billings upon his release from Montana State Prison in August of 2010, and was in sexual offender treatment. In his room, the officers found a printer of a type that is usually attached to a computer. CLAASSEN was not permitted to have a computer by the terms of his supervision. He admitted that he had gotten the printer to print out sexually explicit pictures of children. CLAASSEN also had numerous children's dolls, and printed pictures of female children engaged in sexually explicit activity. Many of the pictures were of preteen girls wearing undergarments that exposed their genitals, while others were pictures of adults engaged in sexual intercourse with preteen girls. CLAASSEN also had stories he had written fantasizing about having sex with children. CLAASSEN reported that he had received the child pornography pictures from a flash drive he got from someone he claimed he worked with after his release from prison in August.

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.

The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Billings Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Montana Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.

A copy of the Offer of Proof can be obtained by contacting Sally Frank at (406) 247-4638.



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