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Robert Kraft issues statement on solicitation charges

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  • By NFL.com Wire Reports
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New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, who is facing charges of two first-degree misdemeanor counts of soliciting prostitution in Florida, issued the following statement on Saturday.

"In deference to the judicial process, I have remained silent these past several weeks. To correct some of the misinformation surrounding this matter, my attorney made his first public comments on Friday night. I would like to use this opportunity to say something that I have wanted to say for four weeks.

"I am truly sorry. I know I have hurt and disappointed my family, my close friends, my co-workers, our fans and many others who rightfully hold me to a higher standard.

"Throughout my life, I have always tried to do the right thing. The last thing I would ever want to do is disrespect another human being. I have extraordinary respect for women; my morals and my soul were shaped by the most wonderful woman, the love of my life, who I was blessed to have as my partner for 50 years.

"As I move forward, I hope to continue to use the platform with which I have been blessed to help others and to try to make a difference. I expect to be judged not by my words, but by my actions. And through those actions, I hope to regain your confidence and respect."

Kraft and 24 other men were charged last month as part of a crackdown on sex trafficking.

The Palm Beach (Fla.) State Attorney confirmed Tuesday it has offered Kraft and 24 other men charged the standard diversion program offered to first-time offenders.

On Friday, Kraft's attorney William Burck told reporters, per The New York Times: "We have looked into it, we've looked at the charges brought, looked at the evidence, and there is zero evidence of human trafficking. Mr. Kraft is being defamed and smeared by anyone who says he's involved in human trafficking. If there was human trafficking, these men would face more than misdemeanors. Our view is that the state attorney's job is to uphold the law, and we think he should be scrutinizing how the search warrant was obtained and traffic stop was done, and explain to us why we're wrong" to object.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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