Billings man sentenced to 14 years in prison for receiving child pornography in coercion and enticement of minors case
BILLINGS — A Billings man was sentenced today to 14 years in prison followed by 12 years of supervised release after he admitted to receiving child pornography as part of scheme to coerce and entice minors to engage in sexually explicit activity, Acting U.S. Attorney Leif M. Johnson said.
Brandon Frank Stricker, 48, pleaded guilty on Feb. 11 to receipt of child pornography as charged in Count V of a superseding indictment, pursuant to a plea agreement.
U.S. District Judge Dana L. Christensen presided. Judge Christensen further ordered Stricker to register as a sex offender, pay a $5,000 assessment under the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act, and pay $619 restitution. Stricker was remanded into custody.
“This case shocks the conscience, and the sentence here was well deserved. We have to do everything we can to protect minors from this sort of abuse and predatory conduct and we will continue to do so,” Acting U.S. Attorney Johnson said.
In court documents and in statements made in court, the government alleged that for almost a two-year period, from about June 2018 to May 2020, Stricker engaged in a pattern of exploitative and criminal conduct with numerous minors in the Billings community. The government alleged Stricker coerced and enticed multiple victims for the purpose of engaging in sexual relations with them and to produce sexually explicit material.
The government further alleged that Stricker received child pornography after meeting Jane Doe 1, a 14-year-old female, and communicating with her online. Jane Doe informed Stricker of her age. On August 11, 2018, Jane Doe 1 sent Stricker two videos via Facebook. One video depicted Jane Doe 1 engaged in sexually explicit conduct by herself, and the second video depicted Jane Doe 1 and another minor female engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Stricker expressed his approval of the videos to Jane Doe 1.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zeno B. Baucus and Karla E. Painter prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the FBI, Montana Division of Criminal Investigation, Montana Probation and Parole and Billings Police Department.
This case was initiated under the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Childhood initiative, which was launched in 2006 to combat the proliferation of technology-facilitated crimes involving the sexual exploitation of children. Through a network of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies and advocacy organizations, Project Safe Childhood attempts to protect children by investigating and prosecuting offenders involved in child sexual exploitation. It is implemented through partnerships including the Montana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. The ICAC Task Force Program was created to assist state and local law enforcement agencies by enhancing their investigative response to technology facilitated crimes against children.