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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of North Dakota

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Devils Lake Man Sentenced for Child Pornography

FARGO - US Attorney Christopher C. Myers announced that on Jan. 30, 2017, Michael Erik Lindseth, 44, Devils Lake, ND, was sentenced before US District Judge Ralph R. Erickson to serve 10 years and 3 months in prison, followed by 5 years of supervised release for Receipt and Possession of Child Pornography. Judge Erickson also ordered Lindseth to pay a $500 special assessment to the Crime Victims’ Fund, as well as $1,000 in restitution to a victim depicted in the child pornography possessed by Lindseth.

This case came to the attention of law enforcement after it discovered that Lindseth was utilizing a sophisticated network of computers to anonymize his internet protocol (IP) address while trading child pornography at his residence in Devils Lake. Based upon this information, law enforcement executed a search warrant at his residence on December 22, 2014, during which time they recovered numerous electronic storage devices. A forensic examination of this media revealed more than 19,000 files of child pornography.

A Federal Grand Jury later charged Lindseth with various child pornography charges and he was released pending trial. On October 17, 2015, Lindseth removed his electronic home monitoring bracelet and left the state of North Dakota. Five months later, in March 2016, Lindseth was arrested in Tempe, Arizona, following a traffic stop of his vehicle.

This case was investigated by the Department of Homeland Security – Homeland Security Investigations and the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

Assistant US Attorney Jennifer Puhl prosecuted the case.

This case was prosecuted as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices throughout the nation, Project Safe Childhood, in conjunction with Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC), help federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies enhance their investigative responses to offenders who use the Internet, online communications systems, or computer technology to sexually exploit children. The ICAC Program is a national network of 61 coordinated task forces engaging in proactive investigations, forensic investigations, and criminal prosecutions. Project Safe Childhood also helps to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated January 31, 2017