Minnesota sex offender sentenced to 27 years for child exploitation crimes

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — A southern Minnesota sex offender was sentenced in federal court Thursday to 27 years in prison for traveling to Iowa to have sex with children. This case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Iowa State Patrol and the Hiawatha (Iowa) Police Department.

Terrance Nordwall, 51, of Faribault, Minnesota, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge C.J. Williams to 324 months in federal prison after a jury found him guilty Oct. 31 of attempted sex trafficking of children, attempted enticement of minors, and travel with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct.

The evidence given at trial showed that in March and April of 2019, Nordwall exchanged text messages with a man who he believed was a “pimp” with a 14-year-old girl and a 15-year-old girl available. The man was actually an undercover law enforcement officer. Nordwall agreed to pay $200 for a half hour with the two girls, and he drove to the Cedar Rapids area to engage in sex. When he arrived he was met by authorities.

Nordwall was previously convicted in 2004 in Minnesota of criminal sexual conduct in the third degree, two counts of criminal sexual conduct in the fifth degree, and possession of pornographic work involving minors.

In addition to his federal prison term, the court imposed a special assessment of $300 for the Crime Victims Fund, and a 5-year term of supervised release following completion of his prison term. He must also comply with all sex offender registration and public notification requirements. There is no parole in the federal prison system.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mark Tremmel.

This investigation was conducted under HSI’s Operation Predator, an international initiative to protect children from sexual predators. Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 25,000 individuals for crimes against children, including the production and distribution of online child exploitation material, traveling overseas for sex with minors, and sex trafficking of children. In fiscal year 2019, more than 3,500 child predators were arrested by HSI special agents under this initiative and more than 1,000 victims identified or rescued.

HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free Tip Line at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. From outside the U.S. and Canada, callers should dial 802-872-6199. Hearing impaired users can call TTY 802-872-6196. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-THE-LOST.