Three-way sex claims and denials

March 17, 2008 4:17:14 PM PDT
His estranged wife denies it, but former New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey said they engaged in threesomes with a male aide. Former New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey said Monday he and his wife and a male aide engaged in sexual threesomes, contradicting a denial issued hours earlier by his estranged wife.

In an e-mail to The Associated Press, the nation's first openly gay governor said published reports by former campaign aide Teddy Pedersen are true.

In interviews posted online Sunday night by The Star-Ledger of Newark and the New York Post, Pedersen said he had consensual sex with the couple for about two years before McGreevey became governor. He said he had contact only with Dina Matos McGreevey during the trysts, and wasn't sure whether McGreevey was gay.

In his statement, McGreevey said he and his estranged wife need to move forward for the sake of their 6-year-old daughter.

"This happened, this happened in the past, and now we need to move on with our lives," McGreevey, 50, said without being specific.

His e-mail to The Associated Press came shortly after one from Matos McGreevey. She said Pedersen's claims of consensual three-way sex "are completely false and were prompted by Jim McGreevey."

"Jim has had a close relationship with Pedersen since his days as mayor of Woodbridge, and arranged jobs for Pedersen from that time through his years as governor and beyond," said Matos McGreevey, 41. "They have continued their close relationship since Jim left office. This was obviously payback time for Pedersen."

Pedersen accompanied McGreevey and his boyfriend on a trip to China last summer, causing Matos McGreevey to inquire in court papers whether his fare was paid for out of a bank account the former governor and his partner share.

The McGreeveys are in the midst of an acrimonious divorce. She accuses him of hiding his homosexuality before and during their marriage and has sued for damages. He has said she should have known he was gay.

Pedersen has given a sworn deposition about the sexual liaisons and expects to be called as a witness in the divorce trial.

Pedersen, 29, told the newspapers the threesomes went on for about two years during the McGreeveys' courtship and into their marriage. He said the trysts ended when McGreevey was elected governor in 2001.

Calls placed by the AP on Monday to two published listings for Pedersen rang unanswered.

Pedersen said he came forward because he was angry that Matos McGreevey was offering television commentary on the resignation of New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who stepped down last week amid a call-girl scandal. During her commentary, Matos McGreevey said she was blindsided when her husband announced his homosexuality.

McGreevey resigned in 2004 after acknowledging an affair with a male staffer who he said was trying to blackmail him. The ex-staffer said he was sexually harassed by the Democratic governor.

The McGreeveys separated shortly after McGreevey's nationally televised speech in which he declared himself "a gay American."

Neither of the McGreeveys mention sexual encounters with Pedersen in their respective memoirs.

"This was referenced in an earlier draft of my book, and I had it removed," McGreevey said in his statement, without elaborating.

He did not respond to a follow-up e-mail asking for an explanation on why the reference was removed.

Matos McGreevey mentions Pedersen in her book several times, at one point referring to him as the driver she did not want tagging along on a romantic getaway with her then-boyfriend.

"If Teddy's going, I'm not," she wrote of a trip to Canada in which she expected McGreevey to pop the marriage question. "It's that simple."

General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church in Manhattan, where McGreevey is enrolled, had no comment on the latest sex allegations Monday.

"It's a personal matter of his," said spokesman Bruce Parker.

Asked if news of the trysts could affect McGreevey's enrollment, Parker said, "I would have to defer to the dean on that."

The McGreeveys are due back in divorce court on Thursday.