ALBANY, N.Y. – Ex-prosecutor Jeanine Pirro, under federal investigation for plotting to secretly record her husband over suspicions that he was having an affair, said Wednesday that any probe into her marriage was "highly improper" and she had no intention of quitting her run for attorney general
Pirro, speaking at a Manhattan news conference, confirmed the investigation but said that prosecutors had no business delving into her troubled union with lobbyist Albert Pirro, who spent 11 months in prison on tax fraud charges and fathered an illegitimate daughter after their wedding.
"Sometime last year, I came to believe that my husband was seeing another woman," Pirro said. "In the midst of matrimonial discord, I was angry and had him followed to see if what I suspected was true. Although I spoke about taping him, there was no taping by me of anyone. There was anger, and frustration, and disappointment."
The former Westchester County district attorney spoke with Bernard Kerik, the disgraced ex- New York police commissioner, about possibly placing a recorder in a room to listen in on her husband, said two people familiar with the situation, who spoke to The Associated Press only on condition of anonymity. Kerik's attorney declined to comment on the case.
Pirro said Kerik was a friend and confirmed that they had spoken about her marital concerns.
"I was a very angry woman, and I said a lot of things," Pirro said. "What matters is what I did and didn't do, and I didn't do anything here other than vent."
Kerik, who was working as a private consultant when the conversation occurred, has his own problems. There were reports that during his 18-month tenure as police commissioner he had simultaneous extramarital affairs with two women, including the publisher of his memoir. And he pleaded guilty three months ago to accepting tens of thousands of dollars in gifts from a New Jersey firm accused of having mob connections.
Pirro, who faces former federal Housing Secretary Andrew Cuomo in the attorney general's race, said she learned about the investigation when she was approached by a pair of FBI agents outside her home. She repeatedly said this was a personal matter involving her husband and charged she was the target of "an unethical, overzealous prosecutor with a partisan agenda."
Heather Tasker, a spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Michael Garcia, said before Pirro's news conference that she could not confirm such an investigation.
A telephone call to Albert Pirro's White Plains office was not immediately returned Wednesday.