United States Attorney's Office Activity

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 06, 2011

OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY DISTRICT OF WYOMING

Christopher A. Crofts
United States Attorney

CONTACT: John R. Powell United States Attorney Spokesman PHONE: 307-772-2124

Wyoming Man Sentenced for Production of Child Pornography. On Tuesday, July 5, 2011, United States District Court Judge Alan B. Johnson sentenced Gabriel Simmons, age 29, of Onawa, Iowa to fifteen (15) years of imprisonment pursuant to Simmons’ previous plea of guilty to the crime of producing child pornography. Additionally, Judge Johnson ordered that Simmons serve a life term of supervised release upon his release from imprisonment, pay restitution of $5,714 and pay an additional $100.00 to a special fund to benefit victims of crimes.

This case was investigated by a Special Agent with Immigration and Customs Enforcement and a Detective with the Cheyenne Police Department who were both assigned to the Wyoming Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force. The joint investigation revealed that over a period of nearly a year Simmons, who had assumed an alias as an employee of a modeling agency, had been communicating online with a 14-year-old female resident of Wyoming. Simmons persuaded the girl to take sexually explicit photographs and videos of herself and send the images to him via the internet. Additionally, Simmons sent the girl images depicting various explicit activity in an attempt to persuade her to engage in similar activity and then to send him images of the same. When the girl refused to comply with Simmons’ request he threatened her by claiming he would release images he had already obtained from her to her family and friends. The girl reported these communications to the local police who in turn contacted the Wyoming ICAC Task Force.

Christopher “Kip” Crofts, the United States Attorney for the District of Wyoming commented on Simmons’ sentencing by stating, “The Wyoming U.S. Attorney’s Office is deeply committed to targeting and prosecuting sexual predators, abusers, and pornographers who target the most innocent and vulnerable of our society – our children. Anyone who uses technology to unlawfully exploit our children will be vigorously prosecuted in the Federal Courts.”

Simmons’ effort to blackmail a 14-year-old girl clearly demonstrates the depravity of those who target children for sexual exploitation,” said David M. Marwell, special agent in charge of ICE Homeland Security Investigations in Denver. “The significant prison sentence that he received takes one more predator off the streets and off the Internet for a long, long time. Afterwards, he’ll have to wear his well-earned ‘sex-offender’ label for the rest of his life. HSI will continue to pursue sexual predators of children throughout cyberspace and around the world.” Marwell oversees a four-state area which includes Wyoming.

Cheyenne Police Chief Brian Kozak said, "We are proud to be part of this multi-agency task force to take down child predators. The lowest level of society, even among prison society, are those who victimize children."

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