Star Man Gets 10 Years for Child Pornography Offense
|U.S. Attorney’s Office November 13, 2012|
BOISE—Michael James Angus, 68, of Star, Idaho, was sentenced today in United States District Court in Boise to 120 months in prison for possessing sexually explicit images of minors, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced. Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill also ordered Angus to be on supervised release for the remainder of his life and pay restitution to the victim. A hearing to determine the amount of restitution has not yet been set.
According to the plea agreement, deputies from the Ada County Sheriff’s Office, who are members of the Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, began an investigation after a 10-year-old female reported that Angus had engaged in inappropriate sexual contact with her while her family was visiting at Angus’ home on October 30, 2011. The parents of the 10-year-old also expressed concern for the welfare of another child, an 8-year-old, who often spent time alone with Angus at his home.
Investigators identified the 8-year-old and contacted her. The girl, whom Angus had cared for off and on for several years, disclosed inappropriate contact by Angus, and told investigators that he had also taken pictures of her dancing, posing nude, and when she was in the bathtub.
Deputies executed a search warrant at Angus’ home and discovered child pornography, including sexually explicit images of the 8-year-old girl. The images were produced on at least four separate dates between July 2009 and September 2011, mostly in or around the bathtub in the master bedroom in Angus’ home in Star. Investigators also discovered hundreds of images of other minors that Angus had downloaded from the Internet. Of these images, according to the plea agreement, 66 are child pornography. The others included naturist (or nudist) images of children as young as 2 years of age, many of which would be considered “child erotica” to a person with a sexual interest in children.
As a condition of the plea agreement, Angus was required to meet with investigators and make disclosures, subject to polygraph verification, concerning any other minors with whom he may have engaged in inappropriate contact. Angus admitted engaging in sexual contact or other sexual behavior with a total of seven young females, age 10 or younger, including the two girls originally identified as possible victims.
“Protecting and rescuing children from sexual exploitation is a critical law enforcement function,” said Olson. “Tragically, in this case, Mr. Angus victimized several young girls before one family contacted law enforcement. I commend the Ada County Sheriff’s Office for its aggressive and thorough efforts to uncover the breadth of Mr. Angus’ criminal conduct. I commend the cooperative efforts of the FBI, the Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and the prosecutors, Assistant U.S. Attorney Jim Peters and Jean Fisher from the Ada County Prosecutor’s Office, for their work in securing what may amount to a life sentence for Mr. Angus and a resolution that ensures his victims obtain justice without having to testify in open court.”
The case was investigated by the Ada County Sheriff’s Department, an affiliate of the Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, assisted by the FBI’s Regional Computer Forensic Lab. The case was prosecuted with the close cooperation of the Ada County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, which had originally brought related charges against Angus. State charges will be dismissed as a result of Angus’ guilty plea and sentence in federal court.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “Resources.”