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Idaho State News

Pocatello Man Sentenced to 40 Years in Federal Prison for Producing Child Pornography

POCATELLO –Trenton Powell, 43, of Pocatello, was sentenced to 40 years in federal prison for sexual exploitation of a child and receipt of child pornography, U.S. Attorney Josh Hurwit announced today.  Senior U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill also sentenced Powell to 15 years of supervised release, which will commence upon completing his prison sentence.  Powell will also be required to register as a sex offender.  A restitution hearing will be set at a later date to determine any restitution owed to the victim by Powell.  Powell was convicted of the eight counts by a federal jury on May 2, 2023.

According to testimony and evidence presented at trial, Powell sexually abused the first victim for six years while living in Pocatello.  Powell photographed the abuse with his iPhone.  Years after the abuse ended, another of Powell’s victims reported the abuse to police.  Police later seized Powell’s iPhone.  After the phone was forensically examined, police recovered images of Powell sexually abusing the first victim.  Both victims testified during the trial and confirmed that Powell was the man who molested them.

“This sentence underscores our commitment to protecting our children from exploitation and abuse,” said U.S. Attorney Hurwit.  “This case is a testament to the dedicated efforts of our law enforcement partners and serves as a stark warning to those who would consider victimizing innocent children.”

“This investigation highlights the strength one voice can have against a child predator, even after years have passed.” said Special Agent in Charge Robert Hammer, who oversees HSI operations in the Pacific Northwest.  “Because of one victim’s courage, HSI and our partners were able to deliver justice to ensure this man can never again victimize the innocent.”

U.S. Attorney Hurwit credited the cooperative efforts of Homeland Security Investigations in Idaho Falls, the Idaho Falls Police Department, and the Pocatello Police Department, which led to the charges.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys John Shirts and Justin Paskett.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and CEOS, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.