A judge today found John Edwards’ former aide Andrew Young in contempt of court for not turning over the Edwards-Rielle Hunter sex tape.
North Carolina Superior Court Judge Abraham Jones reprimanded Young, found him in contempt of court, but didn’t throw him jail. Young has until Wednesday to turn over the tape and the judge told him that until that time Young is in contempt of court and can be jailed at any time. If he turns over the tape, he will no longer be in contempt of court.
The Judge said: “These items are to be produced and turned over to the court - the court will put them under lock and key -- and under seal -- until the lawsuit is resolved.”
Edwards' former mistress, Rielle Hunter, had won a temporary restraining order against Young that sought the return of what she called a private video she made in 2006.
But when deputies went to retrieve the item, Young's attorney declined to release it. Young has said he has a copy of a video showing Edwards in a sexual encounter with a woman he believed to be Hunter.
Hunter has also filed a lawsuit accusing Young of invasion of privacy.
Young's attorneys said the tape is not in Orange County and therefore not subject to Hunter’s TRO. Clearly, the judge disagreed.
Jones held private discussions with attorneys before coming into open court to issue his decision.
In his recent book about Edwards The Politician Young says he found the tape in a "box of trash" Hunter left behind at a home she once stayed in - he writes that the tape had been pulled out of its cassette casing but that he fixed it.
Hunter wrote in an affidavit that she created a private video in September 2006 and that she had stored it in a hat box because she feared somebody would steal it from her trash.
She claimed that both Young and his wife stole the tape from the rented home in North Carolina which they had access too.