Local Politics

Edwards finishes testimony in purported sex tape case

Posted February 12, 2011 11:52 a.m. EST
Updated February 12, 2011 2:47 p.m. EST

— WRAL News has learned that former senator and Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards testified earlier this week in a civil lawsuit his former mistress brought against a former aide over a purported sex tape involving the politician and mistress.

Rielle Hunter, a former campaign worker who gave birth to Edwards' daughter, has sued one-time Edwards aide Andrew Young and his wife, alleging that they took the sex tape and photographs of Edwards with her daughter from her.

No details have been released about Edwards' deposition, but it could be of interest to federal investigators looking into possible criminal activity involving campaign funds during his 2008 presidential run.

Legal experts told WRAL that his testimony could be used to cross-examine Edwards if he took the stand during a criminal trial.

WRAL has also learned that the criminal case is wrapping up, and federal prosecutors could announce whether they will indict Edwards on criminal charges in late February to early March.

Earlier, Judge Carl Fox ordered that Edwards' depositions be kept confidential and threatened to jail on contempt of court charges anyone who discussed the contents of the depositions outside of court.

Hunter alleges in court documents that the Youngs used the video and photos to wrangle book and movie deals for "The Politician," Young's tell-all book about Edwards.

Young surrendered copies of the sex tape and CDs filled with photos to the court in March. The items will be kept under seal until the lawsuit is resolved.

Young, who pretended to be the father of Hunter's child during the 2008 presidential campaign, has said that he kept the video and photos solely to corroborate his story and never used them for publicity or profit. He also contends that Hunter abandoned the property in a rented house in Chatham County.