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  1. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI)
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  3. North Dakota Man Pleads Guilty to Sexually Exploiting Several Children Following HSI St. Paul Investigation

North Dakota Man Pleads Guilty to Sexually Exploiting Several Children Following HSI St. Paul Investigation

Release Date: April 24, 2024

BISMARCK, N.D. — U.S. Attorney for the District of North Dakota Mac Schneider announced March 27 that Nicholas Anfin Nesdahl, 29, of Williston, appeared in federal court on March 27 in Bismarck. He pleaded guilty before District Court Judge Daniel M. Traynor to seven counts of producing or attempting to produce images and videos depicting the sexual exploitation of minors, charged in the District of North Dakota, and two counts related to producing or attempting to produce and receiving images and videos of minors that were charged in the Western District of Pennsylvania.

Nesdahl, scheduled to be sentenced on June 24, is facing 30 to 270 years in federal prison, with a mandatory minimum of 15 years.

Nesdahl befriended minors using various social networking platforms. After minors approved his friend requests, Nesdahl began grooming them to produce images and videos of themselves nude or engaging in sexual activity. A parent of two victims in Pennsylvania first discovered the activity and reported it to law enforcement, which resulted in a search of Nesdahl’s residence in Williston. Authorities discovered that he had victimized at least seven other children in North Dakota, Minnesota, Maryland, Texas and New Jersey. The victims ages ranged from six to 15 years of age.

“Homeland Security Investigations St. Paul special agents work tirelessly to combat child predators like Nesdahl,” said HSI St. Paul Special Agent in Charge Jamie Holt. “We will continue to fight against the exploitation of children and support victims by providing critical resources and services. Well done to the HSI special agents in North Dakota and our law enforcement community partners for bringing Nesdahl to justice for his reprehensible crimes.”

“Without the teamwork between our career prosecutors and their partners, this defendant would still be in the community preying on kids,” Schneider said. “While this guilty plea will increase public safety, it is also a reminder of the need to stay vigilant in the effort to protect children. The United States Attorney’s Office will continue to work closely with state and federal law enforcement to aggressively pursue child predators.”

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 (DOJ). Led by the U.S. attorneys’ offices and the DOJ’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children, as well as identify and rescue victims.

HSI St. Paul and the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigations Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force are investigating the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of North Dakota Gary Delorme is prosecuting. HSI St. Paul oversees suboffices in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota.

Members of the public can report crimes and suspicious activity 24/7 calling the HSI tip line at 877-4-HSI-TIP.

Learn more about HSI’s mission to increase public safety in your community on X, formerly known as Twitter, @HSISaintPaul.

Last Updated: 04/24/2024
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