Man pleads guilty to child porn offenses

A 54-year-old Minot man pleaded guilty to uploading child pornography to an internet chatroom and to two counts of possession of child pornography on Thursday in district court in Minot.

Edwin Herba will be sentenced March 21, according to court records.

The Class A felony carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $20,000 fine; each of the two Class C felonies carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

No sentence is listed on the North Dakota Courts site.

He had originally been charged with eight additional counts of Class C felony possession of child pornography as well.

According to the probable cause affidavit filed with the court, the crimes took place between Aug. 12 and Oct. 2 last year.

Minot police received a report in September from the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigations Crimes Against Children Task Force that child porn had been uploaded to Chatstop, an internet chat room site. The sexually explicit image depicted a girl between the ages of 12 and 16.

Police obtained a search warrant for Herba’s address and found child pornography images and videos on USB flash drives. The child porn depicted girls between the ages of 1 and 16 and some depicted graphic abuse.

On a laptop computer, investigators found that Herba had visited Facebook pages belonging to high school or college age girls and had named some of the files on the flash drive after the girls. Some of the girls appeared to be from Harrah, Okla., a city where Herba had lived, and some of the girls were friends with Herba’s 18-year-old son on Facebook.

Herba worked as a civil service Department of Defense employee at Minot Air Force Base.

– Andrea Johnson

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