Curtis Chester Smith Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Cour
The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Missoula, on September 30, 2011, before U.S. District Judge Donald W. Molloy, CURTIS CHESTER SMITH, a 56-year-old resident of Billings, pled guilty to 3 counts of distribution of child pornography. Sentencing has been set for January 6, 2012. He is currently detained.
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:
SMITH had a Gigatribe account on his computer. Through that account, he distributed - by granting access to his GigaTribe folder on his computer and then file sharing - four files to a law enforcement officer via the Internet. The distribution occurred on July 30, 2010, and the files depicted children engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
A search warrant for SMITH's residence was obtained. Several computers as well as other media were seized.
During a forensic examination, an examiner located evidence of GigaTribe and SMITH's GigaTribe account on the computer seized from his residence. He also located hundreds of chat logs that were associated with chats about pornography, trading child pornography and talk of exploiting children.
The examiner also determined SMITH distributed images depicting children engaged in sexually explicit conduct on May 24, 2010, and June 8, 2010. That distribution occurred via the Yahoo!PhotoSharing program on his computer.
SMITH faces possible penalties of a mandatory minimum of 5 years in prison and could be sentenced to 20 years, a $250,000 fine and lifetime supervision on each count.
The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Kalispell Police Department, the Montana Division of Criminal Investigation, the Billings Police Department, 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.