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Former Judge Found Guilty, Sentenced to 100 Years in Prison

Jun 14, 2013 -- 9:32am

By: Laura-Jane Hatcher and Kevin Karel (WRGA News) 

LATEST:  It’s a century behind bars for former Floyd County Chief Magistrate Judge Chris Mathis, who was found guilty on a total of 54 criminal counts in a series of fraudulent deals involving livestock.

Mathis was handed the sentence Friday morning in Superior Court by Cobb County Judge Grant Brantley, who gave the newly convicted felon 100 years in prison, 60 years probation and ordered him to pay approximately $615,000 in restitution to his multitude of victims, many of whom were elderly members of the local community.

District Attorney Leigh Patterson says she’s happy with the sentence, one which in her estimation was merciless.

“The sticking point to me was that there were so many victims that were over the age of 65...it’s just reprehensible,” Patterson said.

“I asked the judge to show him the same mercy he showed his victims, and that was none. I feel like that’s what the judge did.”

Judge Brantley complimented both Patterson and the defense for a well tried case and told Mathis his previous apology in court was “feeble at best” and lacked both sincerity and true remorsefulness. He also told Mathis he had tarnished all judges in the Floyd County Courthouse through his criminal actions. 

PREVIOUS:  It’s a guilty verdict for the former Floyd County Chief Magistrate Judge accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars in cattle investments. 

A jury found Chris Mathis, age 48, guilty on all 52-counts of his indictment Thursday, for his role in what prosecutors called a Ponzi scheme. According to District Attorney Leigh Patterson, Mathis told investors that, for a price, he could purchase cattle to breed, and then split the profits from selling the heifers with them. Many of those investors never saw a cow, or a profit. 
 
“We showed through our Forensic Accountant that came from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation that that is not how he was spending the money as he should’ve been on the cows,” Patterson says. “He was spending it on himself, on his bills, on old farm loans he had----he wasn’t spending it like he promised the investor he would.”  
 
 

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