Fairbanks Priest Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Child Sex Crimes
ANCHORAGE, AK—U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced today that Clint Michael Landry, 58, of Fairbanks, Alaska, was sentenced on Friday, June 5, 2015, by Chief United States District Court Judge Ralph R. Beistline to 10 years in prison to be followed by a lifetime period of supervised release for Attempted Enticement of a Minor, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2422(b).
At the time of the offense, the defendant was employed as a priest with the Catholic Diocese in Fairbanks, Alaska. He had been in that position since June 2011.
According to the filed plea agreement and sentencing memoranda in the case, in May 2014, the defendant was caught using a work computer to receive images of child pornography through his Yahoo e-mail account. A search of the computer found multiple sexually-explicit Instant Messages (IM) between the defendant and others believed to be located in the Philippines. In many of these IMs, the defendant is negotiating with a Filipino coconspirator about viewing sexually explicit conduct involving minors through webcams and Skype communications.
Between June 2013, and May 2014, the defendant engaged in negotiations with individuals in the Philippines for the purpose of viewing online sex shows. The defendant communicated with at least eight different Yahoo accounts for the purpose of viewing live videos through Skype or other streaming services of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. In at least three of these communications, the defendant sought access to sex shows involving children younger than 11 years old.
• On June 13, 2013, the defendant communicated with a coconspirator, asking “[c]an you show me young boys[?]” He went on to ask, “what handsome young boys do you have?” When told that the available “young boy” was 10 years old, the defendant’s response was “ok,” and he inquired “how much.” The defendant then attempted to offer 1600 Philippine pesos for online access to the child, or approximately $35.
• On July 26, 2013, the defendant initially resisted an offer to view an 11-year-old girl. However, when the only other option offered by the defendant’s coconspirator was an 18-year-old male, the defendant “ask[ed] for your young show,” and said that he would “send money tomorrow.”
• On August 7, 2013, the defendant wrote, “I like to see you boy or girl because they are cute. Only see on yahoo.” When told by his coconspirator that he had children available who were “10 and 8 yrs old,” the defendant replied, “I send you some western union tomorrow.”
In a message dated May 18, 2014, the defendant communicated directly with a person in the Philippines he believed to be a minor. During the chat, the individual said that it was his 16th birthday, and asked the defendant if he wanted to see a picture of the minor’s penis. The defendant replied, “yes.” The conversation continued with the defendant and the minor negotiating how much money the defendant would send to the minor in exchange for producing and transmitting through the Internet the live visual depiction of the minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct. The defendant ultimately drove to a Western Union branch in Fairbanks and wired $55 to the minor in order to entice him to perform the requested online sex show.
In addition, the defendant received images of child pornography through the Internet. On May 19, 2014, the defendant negotiated with a Yahoo user for child pornography. The defendant was told by the Yahoo user to send money for the images. The defendant requested from the Yahoo user “boy pics,” and wrote, “give me pics…boys and girls.” Soon after, the Yahoo user sent 12 e-mails with image and video files attached. The image and video files showed prepubescent girls and boys engaged in sexually explicit conduct, including sadistic and masochistic conduct.
At sentencing, Judge Beistline commented on the fact that child exploitation and pornography offenses like the defendant’s victimize children throughout the world, and the United States’ laws are a “desperate attempt” to put an end to the child pornography trade. “These children are pawns [who] have nothing else but to sell their bodies,” said Judge Beistline, and the victims “carry the burden [of their abuse] with them forever, for a lifetime.”
The defendant’s sentence, to include lifetime supervision that would include restrictions on his Internet access, polygraph examinations, sex offender treatment, and lifetime sex offender registration, was driven by a desire to “deter” the defendant, to insure that he would never again hurt a child. “You are going to be watched forever,” said Judge Beistline, “you are never acting out again, never doing anything again to hurt children.” Judge Beistline was also troubled by the fact that the defendant “had a position of respect in the community” and that he violated the trust that his parish had placed in him.
This case was the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Kyle Reardon prosecuted the case.
This prosecution is part of the Department of Justice’s ongoing Project Safe Childhood (PSC) initiative which was launched to increase federal prosecutions of sexual predators of children, and to reduce the number of Internet crimes against children including child pornography trafficking. As a part of PSC, the United States Attorney’s Office has teamed with state and local agencies and organizations to increase law enforcement presence on the Internet, and to educate the public about safe Internet use, thereby reducing the risk that children might fall prey to online sexual predators. For additional information on the PSC initiative, please go to www.projectsafechildhood.gov or call the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Alaska.