Man pleads guilty for child pornography charges

Sean Petroff, 40, pled guilty for charges stemming from his February 2011 arrest after investigators say GBI found 282 child pornography pictures and 1,942 child erotica images on his computer.

According to Michael J. Moore, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia, on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2011, Petroff pled guilty to one count of the indictment which charges the Albany resident with coercion and enticement in violation Title 18 U.S.C. Section 2242(b).

This violation carries a mandatory minimum statutory penalty of a term of imprisonment of ten years or possibly life, a maximum fine of $250,000 or both; a term of supervised release of at least five years or for life; and a mandatory assessment of $10. Sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 26, 2012.

Petroff will be required to register as a sex offender. He has remained in custody since March 2010 on related state charges.

The stipulation of facts in the plea agreement included the following:

From Aug. 9 through 13, 2010, Petroff used the internet to coerce and entice a minor to engage in sexual activity; that minor was an undercover officer from the Lee County Sheriff's Office. Petroff believed he was communicating with a 14-year-old girl who lived near him in Lee County. On Aug. 13, 2010, Petroff wrote in a text message that if he got caught he could go to jail or prison.

The case was investigated by the Lee County Sheriff's Office, the Dougherty County Police, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Jim Crane prosecuted the case.

The plea hearing took place before the Honorable W. Louis Sands, United States District Judge in Albany.