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Child Exploitation
06/06/2019

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Tucson man sentenced to 70 months in prison for downloading child pornography

TUCSON – Daniel Courville, a former IT programmer, was sentenced Monday to nearly six years in prison for possessing child pornography following an investigation lead by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). The sentence was handed down by U.S. District Judge Cindy K. Jorgenson.

Courville, 43, of Tucson, was indicted by a federal grand jury March 23, 2017, for one count of knowingly accessing child pornography depicting sexual abuse of pre-pubescent minors paving the way for his arrest March 28, 2017.

The HSI Tucson lead investigation began in May 2015 when HSI special agents received a lead from the HSI Cyber Crimes Center’s Child Exploitation Investigations Unit concerning individuals who had downloaded child exploitation images from a server that been seized by the Municipal Police of Zurich, Switzerland. Police officers analyzed the server and identified numerous internet protocol addresses (IP) in the United States, of which one lead special agents to Courville’s residence. A federal search warrant was subsequently served resulting in the seizure of several digital media components of which HSI special agents discovered more than 200 videos and images of child pornography that Courville attempted to delete using software designed to overwrite data in unallocated space.

“Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) is committed to protecting our most vulnerable population who can unfortunately fall victim to child predators,” said Scott Brown, special agent in charge for the HSI Phoenix office. “This case demonstrates the strength between HSI and our international law enforcement partnership we work together to bring sexual predators to justice.  HSI will continue to work with law enforcement partners both domestically and internationally in this crucial endeavor.”

A bench trial began July 30, 2018, where the defendant testified on his own behalf. The following day, U.S. District Court Judge Jorgenson found Courville guilty of knowingly accessing child pornography as charged in the indictment. The defendant was immediately remanded into custody to begin serving his sentence. The court also ordered a lifetime supervised release. A separate hearing to determine victim restitution will occur in the next 90 days, as dictated by the Court.

The prosecution was handled by Carin C. Duryee, District of Arizona, Tucson.

HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free Tip Line at1-866-DHS-2-ICE or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. From outside the U.S. and Canada, callers should dial 802-872-6199. Hearing impaired users can call TTY 802-872-6196.

Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-THE-LOST.

For additional information about wanted suspected child predators, download HSI’s Operation Predator smartphone app or visit the online suspect alerts page. HSI is a founding member of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.

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Last Reviewed/Updated: 06/07/2019