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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, July 7, 2022

West Falls Man Pleads Guilty To Child Exploitation Charge At Start Of Federal Trial

CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX #: (716) 551-3051

BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that, as jury selection was scheduled to get underway in his federal trial, Nicholas Turnquist, 36, of West Falls, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge John L. Sinatra, Jr. to transportation and attempted transportation of a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity. The charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum of life, and a $250,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Maeve E. Huggins, Paul E. Bonanno, and Jonathan P. Cantil, who are handling the case, stated that beginning in 2012, and for several years after, Turnquist sexually abused a minor female victim (Victim) who was known to Turnquist. The sexual abuse occurred in New York State and in other states, including Pennsylvania, and in Canada. For example, on December 23, 2014, Turnquist transported the Victim, a then 16-year-old minor female, from New York to Pennsylvania, to engage in sexual activity.

The plea is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia, the East Aurora Police Department, under the direction of Chief Shane Krieger, and the Wyoming County Sheriff’s Office, under the direction of Sheriff Gregory Rudolph.

Sentencing is scheduled for October 20, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. before Judge Sinatra.

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Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated July 7, 2022