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Press Release

Colorado Man Crossing the Montana/Alberta Border Sentenced to Over 12 Years in Prison for Transportation of Child Pornography

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Montana

GREAT FALLS – Ronald Ray Horner, 57, formerly of Walsenburg, CO, was sentenced today in federal court for transportation of child pornography.  On April 6, 2017, Horner was found guilty by a jury following a two-day trial.  U.S. District Court Judge Brian Morris sentenced Horner to 154 months in prison.  Following his release, Horner will be subject to supervised release for 7 years.  In addition, Horner is also required to forfeit his laptop computer. 


In her trial brief, Assistant U.S. Attorney Cyndee Peterson stated that on March 24, 2014, Ronald Horner was travelling north on I-15 and crossed the Coutts, Alberta border crossing into Canada.  Horner was sent to secondary inspection because he was acting suspiciously.  During secondary inspection, Canada Border Services agents inspected a Toshiba laptop computer belonging to Horner.  On the laptop were over 200 video and image files depicting child pornography.  The examiner also located Horner’s search history which showed Horner purposely sought out child pornography on the laptop.  The files included depictions of prepubescent children being sexually assaulted by adults.


Horner was indicted by a federal Grand Jury on May 4, 2016.  His trial was originally scheduled to commence on October 17, 2016, and Horner was released on conditions pending his trial including electronic monitoring.  In September 2016, Horner cut his ankle bracelet, left a suicide note and fled the United States.  The United States Marshals Service located the defendant in Uruguay.  Horner returned to the United States in February 2017 to stand trial.


Several Canadian law enforcement agencies investigated the case including the Southern Alberta Internet Child Exploitation Unit, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and Canada Border Services Agency.  The United States DHS-Homeland Security Investigations and United States Marshals Service assisted the Canadian authorities with the investigation including the subsequent apprehension of Horner. 


Acting Public Information Officer
(406) 761-7715

Updated November 30, 2017

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