News and Press Releases

Grand Forks Man Sentenced for Possessing and Receiving Child Pornography

August 14, 2012

FARGO - U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on August 14, 2012, Howard Fjeld of Grand Forks, N.D., was sentenced before U.S. District Judge Ralph R. Erickson on charges of possessing and receiving child pornography. Fjeld, 46, pleaded guilty to the charges on April 3, 2012.

Judge Erickson sentenced Fjeld to 17 years’ imprisonment to be followed by a lifetime of supervised release. Fjeld was ordered to pay a $200 special assessment to the Crime Victim's Fund. Fjeld was also ordered to forfeit all of his electronic media. Restitution will be determined at a later date.

On June 23, 2011, law enforcement officers executed a search warrant for Fjeld’s Grand Forks apartment. During the search, members of the International Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force seized various electronic media containing child pornography. Eventually, the electronic media was forensically examined by the N.D. Bureau of Criminal Investigation. The forensic examination revealed 1,188 image files and nine video files of children, including infants, engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

The case was investigated by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement - Homeland Security Investigations.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Klemetsrud Puhl prosecuted the case.

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 U.S.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, visit





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