New York Man Sentenced for Child Exploitation Offense
The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that Brett Ferrell, 33, of New York, was sentenced today in United States District Court in Rutland for traveling in interstate commerce for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual conduct with a minor. Chief United States District Judge Geoffrey W. Crawford sentenced Ferrell to a term of 78 months of imprisonment followed by five years of supervised release. Ferrell has been in custody since his arrest on August 30, 2016.
According to court records, in mid-August 2016, Ferrell posted ads on Craigslist seeking to meet girls under the age of 18 for the purpose of sex. Ferrell then had a multi-day electronic message conversation with a law enforcement officer posing as a 13-year-old girl from Vermont. During the conversation, Ferrell repeatedly stated that he wanted to have sex with the supposed 13-year-old. Ferrell, who lived in New York, made arrangements to meet with the supposed 13-year-old at a hotel in South Burlington, Vermont. Ferrell then made reservations at the hotel and traveled from New York to Vermont for this illicit encounter. At the designated meeting time on the morning of August 30, 2016, Ferrell was arrested by law enforcement officers outside of the hotel.
United States Attorney Christina Nolan commended the efforts of Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the Vermont Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC). She noted that this prosecution is part of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the U.S. Attorney’s Offices, 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 identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit https://www.justice.gov/psc.
Ferrell was represented by Assistant Federal Defender Elizabeth Quinn. The government was represented by Assistant United States Attorney Nicole Cate.