Child exploitation appeal denied

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By Patrick Yost Editor

A Madison man convicted of 11 counts of sexual exploitation of children appeal to the Georgia Appeals Court was rejected November 15.

Ron Mastriogiovanni was sentenced to 20 years on each count, to run concurrent by Georgia Supreme Court Judge Hugh V Wingfield in March, 2012 after a two–day bench trial in Madison on allegations that he had 11 child pornographic images on his computer.

Wingfield sentenced the 69–year–old Mastriogiovanni to 15 years to serve with the remainder to be served on probation, a $5,000 fine and that he register as a sex offender.

Mastriogiovanni was arrested in 2009 after the Georgia Bureau of Investigations received a tip from the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children after that group had been notified by internet service provider AOL.

Mastriogiovanni has been free on bond since the conviction and the appeal.

The appellate court ruled that contentions that Mastriogiovanni made regarding waiving the right to a jury trial were without merit.

Atlanta–based attorney Brian Steel said he would petition the Georgia State Supreme Court and request an appeal on the conviction.

Steel said he did not know if the petition would further Mastriogiovanni’s bond or if he would have to begin serving his sentence. Morgan County Sheriff Robert Markley said Tuesday that Mastriogiovanni would remain free on bond until the appeals court decision was “certified.” “After that he would be taken back into custody,” he said.

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