PORTLAND, Maine — A local man was sentenced Thursday in U.S. District court to 25 years in federal prison on one count of sexual exploitation of a minor.
David Muise, 26, of Portland was also sentenced to 20 years of supervised release.
Muise waived indictment in January and admitted to taking photos that included an image of his genitals and a naked 4-year-old girl and sharing them on the Internet with Daniel Cobb, 37, of Rock Hill, S.C.
The men came to the attention of investigators in September after the Portland man allegedly sent a photo of his genitalia over a clothed child sleeping on her stomach to a Canadian girlfriend in Langley, British Columbia, according to court documents. The woman contacted the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, who alerted American authorities.
Muise, who has been held without bail since his arrest Oct. 15, admitted that he had shared child pornography with others, including a person using the email address email@example.com. Investigators traced that email address to Cobb, according to court documents.
An examination of Muise’s computer indicated that he and Cobb made “extensive sexual comments about each other’s daughters” in online chats. The two fathers appeared “to be sharing sexually explicit photos and videos” of the victims and also [to be] actively molesting them for each other via web cameras,” the affidavit filed in support of a warrant to arrest Cobb said.
Cobb was scheduled May 1 to plead guilty to one count each of sexual exploitation of a minor and transportation of child pornography but the hearing was continued and has not been rescheduled.
The exploitation of a minor charge is punishable by between 15 and 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. The transportation of child pornography charge is punishable by between five and 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
The investigation in both cases was conducted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Portland Police Department and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.
To reach a sexual assault advocate, call the Statewide Sexual Assault Crisis and Support Line at 800-871-7741, TTY 888-458-5599. This free and confidential 24-hour service is accessible from anywhere in Maine. Calls are automatically routed to the closest sexual violence service provider.