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Press Release

Distribution of child pornography sends Missoula man to prison for more than 17 years

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

MISSOULA — A Missoula man who admitted to trading videos and images of child pornography with others on social media sites and who possessed thousands of images of child sexual abuse material was sentenced on Tuesday to 17 years and six months in prison, to be followed by 15 years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich said today.

Nicholas Geoffrey Combs, 29, pleaded guilty in December 2023 to distribution of child pornography.

U.S. District Judge Donald W. Molloy presided. The court also ordered $36,000 restitution.

“There is no more important duty of our office than to protect kids by holding accountable those who seek to victimize them. Our office has prosecuted many people who pose grave dangers to children, but Combs’ conduct is among the worst I’ve seen during my time as Montana’s U.S. Attorney. His possession of thousands of images of graphic sexual and physical violence perpetrated against children, including infants, was grotesque and all parents should be relieved he will spend the next 30 years of his life either in federal prison or under federal supervision,” U.S. Attorney Laslovich said.

In court documents, the government alleged that in June 2022, Snapchat reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) that a Snapchat user had uploaded two videos of minors engaged in sexually explicit content to its service. A law enforcement investigation determined that the Snapchat account belonged to Combs and that he had sent two videos of minors engaged in sexually explicit content to another Snapchat user. Combs admitted to trading videos and images of minors engaged in sexually explicit content with other users on social media sites, including Reddit and Snapchat. Combs also admitted he was sexually attracted to minors, had solicited and received sexually explicit pictures from children with whom he interacted online and sometimes pretended to be a child to solicit the images. Law enforcement seized Combs’ electronic devices and determined that they contained thousands of images and videos of graphic sexual and physical violence against children, including babies.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian C. Lowney prosecuted the case. The Missoula Police Department and Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force conducted the investigation.

This case was brought as 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. Attorney’s Offices and the 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, please visit



Clair J. Howard

Public Affairs Officer


Updated May 22, 2024

Project Safe Childhood
Press Release Number: 24-136