News and Press Releases

Bismarck Man Sentenced for Possession of Child Pornography

May 21, 2012

BISMARCK - U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on May 21, 2012, Russell Weisz, 51, of Bismarck, N.D., was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Daniel L. Hovland on a charge of possession of materials involving the sexual exploitation of minors. Weisz pleaded guilty to the charge on February 15, 2012.

Judge Hovland sentenced Weisz to serve five years and ten months in federal prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release. Weisz was ordered to pay a $100 special assessment to the Crime Victim's Fund. Weisz must register as a sex offender.

Weisz possessed on his computer approximately 68 images of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct. Weisz was initially discovered in possession of the images by an online Internet social website, who upon discovery of the images immediately reported Weisz to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children referred the matter to local law enforcement, who were able to then obtain a search warrant for Weisz’s Bismarck residence. Weisz’s
computer was seized resulting in the discovery of the images.

The case was investigated by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Bismarck Police Department, North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Burleigh County State's Attorney's Office.

This case was brought as a part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), 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 to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

Assistant U.S. Attorney Gary Delorme prosecuted the case.





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