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Federal jury convicts Rigby man of attempted sexual exploitation of child, possession of child porn

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The following is a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Idaho on Wednesday.

POCATELLO – After a five-day jury trial, a federal jury sitting in Pocatello found Tel James Boam, 39, of Rigby, guilty of 16 counts of attempted sexual exploitation of a child and one count of possession of child pornography, Acting U.S. Attorney Rafael M. Gonzalez Jr. announced today. Senior U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill presided over the trial, which began on Sept. 7, and concluded with guilty verdicts on the afternoon of Sept. 20, 2021.

According to court records and evidence presented at trial, the investigation began in September 2019, after an individual reported finding videos of a nude minor on Boam’s iPhone. A detective with the Jefferson County Sherriff’s Office obtained a search warrant for Boam’s iCloud account. An agent with Homeland Security Investigations in Idaho Falls searched Boam’s iCloud account and found that Boam had attempted to produce, by surreptitious recording, 36 sexually explicit videos of a 14-year-old child, and that Boam had possessed those videos. Testimony provided that the videos were produced with a spy camera that Boam purchased using his credit card.

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Each of the 16 counts of attempted sexual exploitation of a minor is punishable by 15 to 30 years in federal prison. The charge of possession of child pornography is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison. Each charge is also punishable by a fine of up to $250,000, and five years to a lifetime of supervised release.

Sentencing is set for Dec. 14, 2021, before Judge Winmill at the federal courthouse in Pocatello. The federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors.

Acting U.S. Attorney Gonzalez praised the initial reporting party for promptly reporting the crime and the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office for quickly following up.

“Their timely response, and that of Homeland Security Investigations in Idaho Falls, made this case,” Mr. Gonzalez said. “I commend these investigators and our assistant U.S. attorneys and staff for aggressively pursuing this defendant, and I thank the jury for holding him accountable. As a community, we need to be watchful and report our suspicions to law enforcement,” he concluded.

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.

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