The New York Times reports New York governor turned Luv Gov Eliot Spitzer won't be charged for his part in the call girl scandal that ended his political career.
On March 6, 2008, this office announced the filing of criminal charges related to an international prostitution ring known as the Emperors Club V.I.P. The investigation which led to those charges began when this Office learned of payments made in a questionable manner by former Governor Spitzer to a bank account in the name “QAT Consulting.” After the investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation Division, the office determined that the QAT Consulting account and a similar account at another financial institution had been used to launder more than $1 million worth of criminal proceeds derived from the Emperors Club V.I.P.’s prostitution business.
Eliot Spitzer has acknowledged to this Office that he was a client of, and made payments to, the Emperors Club V.I.P. Our investigation has shown that on multiple occasions, Mr. Spitzer arranged for women to travel from one state to another state to engage in prostitution. After a thorough investigation, this Office has uncovered no evidence of misuse of public or campaign funds. In addition, we have determined that there is insufficient evidence to bring charges against Mr. Spitzer for any offense relating to the withdrawal of funds for, and his payments to, the Emperors Club V.I.P.
In light of the policy of the Department of Justice with respect to prostitution offenses and the longstanding practice of this office, as well as Mr. Spitzer’s acceptance of responsibility for his conduct, we have concluded that the public interest would not be further advanced by filing criminal charges in this matter.
In a statement, Spitzer responds:
I understand the office of the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York has decided that it will not bring criminal charges against me. I appreciate the impartiality and thoroughness of the investigation by the U.S. attorney’s office, and I acknowledge and accept responsibility for the conduct it disclosed.
I resigned my position as governor because I recognized that conduct was unworthy of an elected official. I once again apologize for my actions, and for the pain and disappointment those actions caused my family and the many people who supported me during my career in public life.
I asked my friend Debauchette, a blogger and ex-courtesan, for her thoughts on the news. She writes:
It's definitely annoying.
I suppose my immediate response is that it seems like a pretty typical case of the john being released while the prostitute, or in this case, the agency, gets punished. It's sad to think that Emperors would have been left alone if it hadn't been for Spitzer. He's the one they were after, and now he gets off while the agency owners get god knows what kind of punishment. Put this within the larger context that Spitzer saw prostitutes while actively seeking their imprisonment, and that Emperors was only attending to his requests, and the whole mess strikes me as a distortion of justice and a sickening waste of resources. But that's nothing new.
Related: "Letters from Johns."
(Image credit: Barbara Kruger's award-winning cover for New York Magazine.)