Popular chef gets 20 years in prison for sexually exploiting kids

By Rebecca Everett reverett@njadvancemedia.com |

A well-known chef and restaurant owner was sentenced in federal court Wednesday to 20 years in prison after admitting he and his ex-girlfriend conspired to record themselves engaging in sexual activities with children.

Alexander Capasso, 44, of Collingswood, took a plea deal in June, two years after he sent sexually explicit photos of at least one of the two children he admitted photographing to undercover FBI agent, according to U.S. District Court documents.

Capasso is known in the culinary scene in and around Philadelphia. He operated Blackbird Dining Establishment and West Side Gravy in Collingswood between 2007 and 2013 and was a former partner in Crow & Pitcher in Philadelphia, which has since closed.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office of New Jersey said in a statement Wednesday that Capasso and his former girlfriend, Audubon nurse Janine Kelley, 36, began dating in 2010.

Authorities allege in court documents that after he told Kelley he was interested in sexual conduct with children, she and Capasso recorded or photographed each other doing sexually explicit things to a girl and a boy who were both under 10.

The mother of one of the children gave a statement in court Wednesday, calling Capasso a “monster” and saying that her daughter still recalls what was done to her, according to Philly.com.

Kelley pleaded guilty in August of 2016 to the same charge as Capasso: conspiring to engage in the sexual exploitation of the children. She faces a sentence of between 15 and 30 years when she is sentenced Friday.

In their online and text message conversations, Capasso allegedly told the agent he was looking forward to abusing the daughter he was expecting soon.

In court Wednesday, Capasso apologized for his actions and denied ever abusing his own three children, according to Philly.com.

As part of his sentence, Capasso will have to register as a sex offender and be under supervised release for the rest of his life.

Source: NJ.com

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