GREAT FALLS – Shale Dean Brandt of Great Falls was sentenced on Thursday for receipt of child pornography.
A press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office says that District Judge Brian Morris sentenced Brandt to 72 months (six years) in prison, followed by five years of supervised release. Brandt was also ordered to pay $33,136.40 in restitution.
The charge stemmed from an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations into an Interpol tip that showed Brandt participated in chats and expressed a sexual interest in children.
Brandt was interviewed and consented to the search of his several electronic devices. A total of 551 specific images and 24 videos were found on the devices.
A certified forensic examiner analyzed the three devices and found the devices contacted files, images, and videos depicting child pornography. The video files depicted images of prepubescent children involved in sexually explicit conduct.
In one instance, Brandt communicated with a Montana woman who provided him with images of child pornography of her 10-year old daughter.
The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Tom Bartleson.
This case was initiated under the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Childhood initiative which was launched in 2006 to combat the proliferation of technology-facilitated crimes involving the sexual exploitation of children.
It is implemented through partnerships including the Montana Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force. The ICAC Task Force Program was created to assist state and local law enforcement agencies by enhancing their investigative response to technology facilitated crimes against children.