BILLINGS , MONTANA — A Billings man accused of knowingly receiving and approving of sexually explicit videos from a minor female on Wednesday admitted to receiving child pornography, Acting U.S Attorney Leif Johnson said today.
Brandon Frank Stricker, 47, pleaded guilty to receipt of child pornography. Stricker faces a minimum mandatory five years to 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and five years to life of supervised release. Under the terms of a plea agreement, if accepted by the Court, Stricker will be sentenced to between seven years and 20 years in prison.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Timothy J. Cavan presided. Stricker was released pending sentencing, which was set for June 16 before U.S. District Judge Dana L. Christensen.
In court documents filed in the case, the prosecution said that in June 2018 Stricker met Jane Doe 1, a 14-year-old female. Stricker communicated online with Jane Doe 1, including via Facebook Messenger. In a June 2018 message, Jane Doe 1 informed Stricker of her age.
On August 11, 2018, Jane Doe 1 sent Stricker two videos via Facebook. One video depicted Jane Doe 1 engaged in sexually explicit conduct by herself and the second video reflected Jane Doe 1 and another minor female engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Stricker expressed his approval of the videos to Jane Doe 1.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zeno Baucus and Karla Painter are prosecuting the case, which was investigated by the FBI.
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. Through a network of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies and advocacy organizations, Project Safe Childhood attempts to protect children by investigating and prosecuting offenders involved in child sexual exploitation. It is implemented through partnerships including the Montana Internet Crimes Against Children 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.