Former Valdosta mayor sentenced - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Former Valdosta mayor sentenced

VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -

The former mayor of Valdosta was sentenced Wednesday after pleading guilty to one count of providing false statements.

John Fretti was ordered to serve three years probation and pay a $1,000 fine and $4,200 restitution to the city after getting travel reimbursements from the city and state for the same trips.

This is video of John Fretti at his last state of the city address back in February.

Now more than six months later he's convicted of providing false statements.

District Attorney David Miller and even Roy Taylor, the business man who accused Fretti of double-dipping, think the sentence handed down to him Wednesday by Judge Harry Altman was fair.

"I think it's an appropriate sentence," said Miller.

"If they would've sent him to jail, we the citizens would've had to pay," Taylor.

Fretti walked out of the judicial building with a sentence of three years probation.

He was also ordered to pay of fine $1,000, nearly $4,200 in restitution to the city, a $50 crime lab fee and resign from his job as mayor which he did last Tuesday.

He also can't run again while on probation.

Prosecutors say the mayor knowingly signed vouchers from the Department of Community Affairs claiming per diem and mileage for the trips to DCA meetings between June 3, 2009 and June 2, 2010. They say he also claimed mileage reimbursement from city for the same trips.

"It's sad and baffling," said Miller. "John has been a very good mayor. I did my job and he's been sentenced now he and the city can move forward."

"We just don't think John Fretti had a right to take from the taxpayers who was already taking good care of him," said Taylor.

Thursday night city council will appoint an interim mayor.

We reached out to John Fretti, but he did not respond to our requests for an interview.

 
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