A former FBI Supervisory special agent has been arrested and charged with distributing child pornography. The agent, Donald J. Sachtleben , had worked on such high profile terrorism and bombing cases as the Unabomber case, the Oklahoma City bombing, the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and the 9/11 attacks, serving as a team leader on many investigations.
Sachtleben was charged in a criminal complaint (unsealed by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Indiana) alleging that he knowingly possessed and distributed child pornography. Last fall, investigators from an Internet Crimes Against Children task force and the FBI executed a search warrant of a different man, Jason Nicosen of Illinois, who was allegedly trading images of child pornography. Upon searching the suspect’s computer, the agents found a trail that to an Internet protocol address at Sachtleben’s home in Carmel, Ind.
A criminal complaint detailed the items federal agents recovered from Sachtleben’s home after they executed a search warrant at the residence. “A limited on-scene triage of the evidence was completed on computers and storage media found inside the residence and a vehicle. Approximately 30 image and video files containing child pornography were recovered from within a Hitachi Hard Drive inside a Sony VAIO Laptop.”
In an affidavit, FBI Special Agent Kerri Reifel wrote, “Sachleben’s [sic] wife was interviewed during the execution of the search warrant and denied any knowledge of the child pornography found in Sony VAIO laptop or any involvement with child pornography distribution or possession.”
The images found on Sachtleben’s computer and Jason Nicoson’s computer allegedly matched.
If convicted, Donald Sachtleben, who apparently retired from the FBI in 2008, could be sentenced to 20 years in prison for the distribution charge and 10 years for possession.
US Attorney Joseph Hogsett said, “Today’s announcement underscores this serious commitment, and should make clear that no matter who you are, you will be brought to justice if you are found guilty of such criminal behavior.”
Justice Department statistics indicate that the number of cases the Department has brought involving the sexual exploitation of children increased by 42 percent since 2006.