Robert Kraft statement, says he’s “truly sorry” for the pain.

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft says he’s “truly sorry” for the pain he has caused to those close to him and to Patriots fans in the wake of being charged with soliciting prostitution.

“I know I have hurt and disappointed my family, my close friends, my coworkers, our fans and many others who rightfully hold me to a higher standard,” Kraft said Saturday in his first public statement on the matter, though he did not admit to any guilt in the case.

The statement was first reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Kraft was charged with two counts of prostitution solicitation last month for allegedly paying for sexual acts in January at the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Florida. The 77-year-old has pleaded not guilty and denied engaging in any illegal activity — though police say they have video evidence.

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In his statement Saturday, Kraft said he hoped to regain the public’s confidence and said he had “extraordinary respect for women.”

“Throughout my life, I have always tried to do the right thing,” he said. “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.”

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Kraft’s longtime wife, Myra, died in 2011.

“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,” he said Saturday. “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 has an arraignment court hearing scheduled Thursday, though he is not expected to appear in person. The NFL owner has also refused to accept a plea deal offered by prosecutors, which would require him to perform 100 hours community service, attend a class about the negative effects of prostitution, pay a $10,000 fine, and admit he would have been found guilty in court.

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William Burck, one of Kraft’s attorneys, spoke out Friday, arguing that police improperly obtained a search warrant to secretly install cameras inside the Jupiter massage parlor, which officials say was part of a broad human trafficking investigation. However, police have not yet filed any trafficking-related charges in the case.

“If there was human trafficking, these men would face more than misdemeanors,” Burck said. “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.”


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