Lawyers for disgraced former Rep. Anthony Weiner claim that the teenage girl to whom he sent explicit messages wanted to influence the 2016 presidential election.
Weiner’s lawyers said that Weiner never sought out teenage girls, The Associated Press reported. But they admitted that Weiner’s acts were “born of deep sickness.”
“He responded to the victim’s request for sexually explicit messages not because she was a teenager but in spite of it,” the lawyers said.
Weiner is to be sentenced on Sept. 25. He pled guilty in May to federal charges of transmitting sexual material to a minor.
The former Democratic congressman’s lawyers said that the investigation into Weiner was improperly injected into the presidential election.
Weiner’s wife, Huma Abedin, was a close aide to Hillary Clinton. Weiner was investigated by the FBI after it was discovered his victim was underage.
With a little more than a week before the election, then-FBI Director James B. Comey informed Congress in a letter was looking into emails kept on Clinton’s private email server discovered in the Weiner investigation.
Lawyers for Weiner claimed the girl documented their interactions and sold her story to a British tabloid for $30,000.
“After the election was over, the high school student told government investigators that this had been one of her goals from the outset,” the lawyers said.
In an interview with “Inside Edition,” the girl said she wanted to see if Weiner was still up to the antics that led to him resigning from Congress, knowing Clinton would be a presidential candidate.
“Quite improperly injected into the U.S. presidential election, quite possibly affecting its outcome,” Weiner’s lawyers said.
Weiner resigned from Congress in 2011 after it was discovered he sent explicit sexual messages.
Weiner again saw his political prospects derailed in 2013 when he was running for mayor of New York City and it was revealed he had continued sending explicit messages.