Las Vegas Man Sentenced To Over 12 Years in Prison For Sex Trafficking Children While Visiting Metro-Detroit
DETROIT – United States District Court Judge Terrence G. Berg sentenced Robert Howard Gratton, 35, of Marlette, to 240 months in prison on charges of possession of child pornography, announced United States Attorney Dawn Ison.
Ison was joined in the announcement by Josh P. Hauxhurst, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Detroit Division and Brenda Sanford, Sanilac County Prosecutor.
According to court records, Gratton – a registered sex offender who had two prior convictions for offenses related to the possession of child pornography – possessed images of child pornography recovered on his cellular phone during the course of an investigation of a sexual assault he committed.
US Attorney Dawn N. Ison stated, “This significant sentence resulting from cooperation between local, state, and federal law enforcement, demonstrates our commitment to keeping some of our most vulnerable citizens safe from sex offenders who prey on children.”
Prosecutor Sanford stated, "The Sanilac County Prosecutor's Office greatly appreciates the efforts of all of the law enforcement officers who were involved in the investigation in bringing the defendant to justice."
Gratton also was sentenced in the 24th Judicial Circuit Court to 90 to 180 months in prison for a second-degree criminal sexual conduct charge, concurrent to the federal sentence, the assault of a minor that led to the discovery of this offense.
The case was the result of a joint investigation by the Sanilac County Sheriff’s Department, the Michigan State Police, and the Northeast Michigan Trafficking and Exploitation Crimes Task Force (“NEMTEC”) of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as well as a cooperative effort between the Sanilac County Prosecutor’s Office and the United States Attorney’s Office.