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Anthony Weiner pleads guilty in sexting case, could face years in prison

19 May 2017

A spokesman for the law firm representing Weiner, Covington & Burling, said he would plead guilty before U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska on Friday morning but offered no further details.

Former congressman Anthony Weiner has pleaded guilty to transmitting sexual material to a 15-year-old girl and faces years in prison.

US authorities have been investigating reports that Weiner, 52, sent explicit messages previous year to a teenage girl in North Carolina.

The official wasn't authorized to speak about the plea bargain because the criminal charges had yet to be filed publicly with the court and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. Federal sex offenders can't be alone with children, and if Weiner and Abedin do finally get divorced, Weiner cannot seek custody of his son.

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The FBI began investigating Weiner in September after the 15-year-old from North Carolina told the Daily Mail she and Weiner had exchanged lewd messages for several months.

The investigation infamously intersected previous year with the 2016 presidential campaign, when agents seized devices and found emails between Hillary Clinton and Huma Abedin, Weiner's estranged wife and a top Clinton adviser.

As a result, James Comey, then the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, announced in late October that the agency was reviewing the messages to determine whether to reopen its investigation into Clinton's handling of official correspondence.

She also accused him of asking her to undress on camera. Comey announced shortly before the election that the new emails contained nothing to change his view that Clinton could not be charged with a crime. The Comey letters and late-in-the-election investigation have been blamed for Clinton's loss to President Donald Trump, The Los Angeles Times reported.

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Weiner's lawyer, Arlo Devlin Brown, didn't immediately return a message Friday.

The outspoken politician resigned from Congress in 2011 after an errant tweet ended up exposing his sexting habits.

His failed mayoral bid was the subject of a documentary called Weiner.

He ran for New York City mayor in 2013 and was leading several polls until it was revealed he had continued his questionable behaviour.

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Anthony Weiner pleads guilty in sexting case, could face years in prison