Government & Politics

Former stripper convicted of filming sex partners seeks pardon from Gov. Greitens

Five things to know about the Greitens scandal

A St. Louis grand jury on Feb. 22 indicted Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens on a felony charge of invasion of privacy.
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A St. Louis grand jury on Feb. 22 indicted Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens on a felony charge of invasion of privacy.

A former law student and male stripper convicted nearly 20 years ago of invasion of privacy for secretly filming sex partners is asking Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens for a pardon.

Greitens was indicted last week under the same criminal statute for allegedly taking a compromising photograph of a woman with whom he was having an affair.

Greitens lawyers' motion to have the charge dismissed uses the same legal rationale as the request for the pardon, according to attorney Albert Watkins, who sent the pardon request on behalf of his client to one of Greitens' lawyers.

It would be "mighty hypocritical" of the governor not to grant the pardon given the basis for the request appears identical to the motion to dismiss Greitens' pending felony charge, Watkins said in a press release Sunday.

"What's good for the Governor should be good for the gander," Watkins said in the release.

An attorney for Greitens declined to comment on the pardon request Monday.

Watkins also represents the man whose ex-wife had an affair with Greitens in 2015. The man released a secretly recorded conversation with his ex-wife in which she claimed that Greitens took a compromising photo of her as potential blackmail if she spoke about the relationship.

Greitens has admitted to the affair but denies the blackmail allegations.

A St. Louis grand jury indicted Greitens Thursday on felony invasion of privacy, accusing Greitens of photographing the woman and transmitting the image so it could be accessed via a computer.

A motion to dismiss the indictment argues that the invasion of privacy statute "applies to situations such as voyeurs or peeping toms who take photographs in locations such as restrooms, tanning beds, locker rooms, changing rooms, and bedrooms. The law does not apply to the participants in sexual activity."

Greitens and the woman were in consensual sexual activity, his attorneys argue.

The request for the pardon is on the behalf of Paul Henreid, a documentary filmmaker and lawyer from Walnut Creek, Calif. Henreid, then Paul Henroid, pleaded guilty in 1999 in St. Louis to invasion of privacy after filming multiple sex partners without their knowledge.

At the time, his attorneys had unsuccessfully challenged the statute as unconstitutionally vague and was aimed at peeping toms, not someone engaged in consensual sex, according to his pardon request.

As part of a plea agreement, Henreid pleaded guilty to invasion of privacy, with other charges being dismissed. Henreid expected to receive probation which if completed successfully would have resulted in no record of conviction. However, the judge instead sentenced him to 30 days of shock time and left him with a conviction, according to court documents.

Henreid previously sought a pardon from Gov. Jay Nixon. Nixon in 2011. Nixon, however, did not act on the request. Watkins is asking Greitens to grant the pardon.

The Star's Bryan Lowry contributed to this story.