NEW YORK — Huma Abedin filed for divorce from Anthony Weiner May 19, the same day the disgraced congressman pleaded guilty in connection with his sexting case.
The divorce action, labeled “anonymous versus anonymous,” was filed in Manhattan Supreme Court.
The action asks the court to seal the case.
Abedin, of Indian and Pakistani descent, and Weiner were married on July 10, 2010, while she was working as a close aide to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Weiner had been in Congress since 1998 and had come in second place in a bid for the Democratic nomination for New York City mayor in 2005.
The sexting scandal began in late May of 2011, after a lewd photograph of a man’s underwear-clad crotch was sent from Weiner’s Twitter account before quickly being taken down. A spokesman said Weiner’s accounts were hacked and called the burgeoning social media scandal “a distraction,” before Weiner tearfully admitted to sending the lewd photo and then lying repeatedly to protect himself.
He initially refused to resign, then sought a temporary leave of absence from the House to seek professional treatment. He eventually stepped down from Congress on June 16.
Weiner re-entered politics two years later in another run for New York City mayor and was leading in some polls before a gossip website posted sexually explicit messages it said were exchanged between Weiner and a woman later identified as Indiana native Sydney Leathers.
She claimed Weiner used the alias “Carlos Danger” for their exchanges. Weiner refused to drop out of the race and finished fifth in the Democratic primary.
The couple remained together until late August of 2016, when The New York Post published photos it said Weiner sent the previous year to a “40-something” divorced woman. One bulging-underwear shot showed the couple’s toddler son cuddling next to him.
The next day, Abedin announced she was separating from Weiner.
About a month later, The Daily Mail published an interview with a 15-year-old girl who claimed she had sexually explicit online text and video exchanges with Weiner. He acknowledged communications but also claimed he was the subject of a hoax.
On May 19, he pleaded guilty to a sex charge, tearfully apologizing for communications with the teen that he said destroyed his “life’s dream in public service.”
Weiner, who could go to prison, pleaded guilty to a single count of transmitting sexual material to a minor. He admitted exchanging online messages with the girl beginning in January 2015 and engaging in obscene communications that included “sharing explicit images and encouraging her to engage in sexually explicit conduct.”
“I have a sickness, but I do not have an excuse,” he said.
The 52-year-old paused repeatedly as he fought back tears and tried to compose himself. He said he knew the texting was “as morally wrong as it was unlawful.”
Pleading guilty to the charge, which requires him to register as a sex offender, could bring a sentence of up to 10 years. But Weiner is likely to serve a much shorter term. He signed a plea agreement with prosecutors in which he agreed not to appeal any sentence between 21 and 27 months in prison. His lawyer can request leniency at a sentencing scheduled for Sept. 8.