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Kingston child sex abuser's appeal rejected

A convicted Kingston child sex abuser's challenge to the plea deal that sent him to prison has been rejected by a state appellate court, officials said.

Herbert Ferro, 45, must continue to serve his 12-year sentence for sexual conduct against a child, Ulster County District Attorney Holley Carnright said Tuesday.

A panel of judges with the state Appellate Division last week denied Ferro's claim that the plea was not entirely voluntary and lacked sufficient factual basis. He also claimed his agreement to waive the right to appeal was invalid and that the sentence was harsh and excessive. The court rejected that argument as well, noting that Ferro had confirmed while accepting the plea deal that he understood his appeal rights and wanted to give them up.

Over a seven-month period from May to December 2009, Ferro sexually abused two children in Ulster County, Carnright said. Both victims were younger than 12 at the time. After a four-count indictment, Ferro pleaded guilty to one count of the sex abuse charge and was sentenced on March 25, 2011, by Acting County Courty Judge Andrew Cerisia.

Ferro is housed at Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora. He will also have to serve five years of post-release supervision and must register as a sex offender under the plea deal.

Assistant District Attorney Joan Gudesblatt Lamb handled the appeal for the district attorney's office. Barrett Mack of Valatie represented Ferro. A spokesman at Mack's office said it had not yet heard from Ferro on whether to pursue an appeal with the state's highest court, the Court of Appeals. He declined further comment.

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