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Never mind that New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is accused of receiving “paid acts” of sex in a Florida day spa. President Donald Trump reportedly wants his bestie to be at the Super Bowl victory party at the White House later this spring.
That’s according to Politico, which reported that Trump told an aide to make sure Kraft attends. Trump has previously indicated that he supports Kraft, a 77-year-old billionaire who owns numerous businesses, in his legal battle over allegedly soliciting sex workers. There’s allegedly video footage of Kraft visiting the spa twice in a few weeks.
“I would bet that he comes,” an anonymous White House official told Politico. “He’s synonymous with the team. He’s accused, but he hasn’t been convicted.”
“He’s proclaimed his innocence totally, but I’m very surprised to see it,” Trump said of Kraft last month.
Florida authorities say they have video evidence of Kraft engaging in paid-for sex acts at a spa earlier this year. Kraft is among 100 people linked to a ring of Florida spas and massage parlors suspected of doubling as prostitution dens.
Kraft and his attorneys have reportedly filed a motion, along with numerous other defendants, to stop the release of the surveillance footage from the spa. Kraft is expected to decline a plea deal that would get rid of his misdemeanor solicitation charges if he pays fines, does community service work, and admits guilt, according to CNN.
For his part, Kraft has denied any wrongdoing. Kraft’s arraignment date is set for March 28.
Kraft joins a growing list of men accused of crimes and sexual misconduct whom Trump has taken to defending. Trump previously defended disgraced Fox News host Bill O’Reilly, who was ousted from the network over sexual harassment allegations, as well as former Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, who was accused of dating and sexually harassing young girls. Earlier this month, Trump defended his former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, who was sentenced to 47 months in prison over a slew of financial fraud crimes.
"I feel very badly for Paul Manafort," Trump said. "I think it's been a very, very tough time for him."
There's no date set yet for the White House to host this year's Super Bowl champs, but it was last June when the 2018 bowl-winning Philadelphia Eagles were disinvited after players declined over differences with Trump.
Cover: New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft yells to fans during their victory parade through downtown Boston, Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019, to celebrate their win over the Los Angeles Rams in Sunday's NFL Super Bowl 53 football game in Atlanta. The Patriots have won six Super Bowl championships. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)