Local Politics

Judge wants extra security for Edwards sex tape

Posted February 8, 2010

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— A Superior Court judge has ordered that an independent security officer be present when a former aide to two-time Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards retrieves a videotape that purportedly shows the candidate having extramarital sex.

Judge Abraham Penn Jones said he filed the order at 10:35 p.m. Sunday to ensure the items covered in a court order he issued Friday were properly surrendered and that no copies remained outside of the court's custody.

Rielle Hunter, a campaign staffer who had an affair and a child with Edwards, sued Andrew and Cheri Young on Jan. 28, saying they had taken a video she described as "very private and personal," as well as two campaign videos she shot and eight pictures of her daughter.

Andrew Young was a top aide to Edwards during his two presidential campaigns, and he recently wrote a book, "The Politician," that provides a behind-the-scene look at the campaigns and Edwards' affair with Hunter.

Jones found the Youngs in contempt on Friday for not immediately surrendering the videos and photos, as well as a list of 34 men under the heading "Slut Club," but the judge gave them until 2 p.m. Wednesday to turn the items over.

In an affidavit filed with the court late Friday, Andrew Young said the original and a copy of the sex tape are in a safe deposit box in Atlanta. He said he turned over another copy of the tape to the FBI when he testified to a federal grand jury in Raleigh that has been investigating whether money from the Edwards' campaign was illegally used to cover up the affair.

Jones' order prevents Young from opening the safe deposit box unless an officer from Raleigh-based Risk Management Associates is present to take custody of the items. Also, another officer of the security management firm will be dispatched to the Youngs home to scrub their laptop of any images of Hunter or her child.

Young appealed the order late Monday.

Hunter alleges in her lawsuit that the Youngs wanted the items to generate publicity for the book. She obtained a restraining order that prevents the couple from using the videos or photos.

The videos were in a box in a Chatham County house the Youngs rented for Hunter in 2007, while the photos were on her digital camera or laptop, she said.

The Youngs said last week that they kept the items only to back up details in the book and never intended to profit from them. Still, the contend in court filings that Hunter left the items in a box in their home for more than two years, so she no longer can asset ownership over them since they were abandoned.

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  • wildcat Feb 9, 2010

    Does anyone want to speculate as to why?

    Because more than likely the tapes are not in Atlanta. They are in Pittsboro somewhere. The Youngs just had words and no proof. So yes an officer should escort them.

  • wildcat Feb 9, 2010

    Ha Ha, there are many more of these same tapes somewhere. Who is the judge fooling? Just wait, and we will all see them on the internet. The tapes should have been destroyed. I don't undertand why she wants them back and what would she do with them. John Edwards, a public figure deserves what comes his way. Being a public figure, he should have known his doings would be made public and not just to his wife and family.

  • itsmyownopinion Feb 9, 2010

    Young has appealed the order, and reportedly says it's not necessary to have a security guard in Atlanta. Does anyone want to speculate as to why?

  • maxx Feb 9, 2010

    Who's naive enough to think this is the ONLY copy? Yeah, riiiiight.

  • GetRight Feb 9, 2010

    GravyPig - "Here's a thought. If you don't want to be embarrassed by a sex tape, don't make one"

    What's your problem!? These are lawyers and politicians we're talking about here. What you are suggesting would involve common sense, which would have to come from from someone like a middle aged farmer in Pittsboro or some other undesirable or that sort; a little person; a nobody. Do you really think Edwards would take advice from someone like that or use the kind of conventional wisdom and prudence a person like that would use to guide their life by? C'mon! (dripping with sarcasm)

  • larky74406 Feb 9, 2010

    Do they even make video tape anymore?

  • WHEEL Feb 9, 2010

    All this crazy, hick town, Judge wants is some face time in the news so he can show his grandchildren how important he "was".

  • Pepsi Man Feb 8, 2010

    How much you wanna bet Edwards leaks a copy to the internet so he can frame his former aid for doing it, so that the judge will make an example out of the Young's. Sounds like perfect revenge. Either way Ole Johnny is smart, and crafty as we have seen. He will find a way to get back at them.

  • woodrowboyd2 Feb 8, 2010

    the tape should be made public for all to see
    taxpayers money help get this show on the road and we all should watch our dollars at work

  • mrduffin Feb 8, 2010

    The Youngs better hope it never gets on the Internet. Since they had the original, if it does I'm sure the judge will be pretty upset and make an example of the two.

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