Robert Kraft doesn't have to appear at arraignment, says his attorney

Alex Reimer
March 07, 2019 - 11:38 am

Robert Kraft won't have to appear at his arriagnment later this month, his attorney said Thursday. Authorities had filed court papers in Palm Beach County that order Kraft in a Florida court next month to face charges of soliciting prostitution. 

“This is a routine procedural hearing that the Court sets based on its schedule. The notice of appearance by the defendant is boilerplate, but in fact the lawyer appears for the defendant in a misdemeanor case. The defendant does not appear,” Jack Goldberger said in a statement. 

Though Kraft's misdemeanor charges will likely result in little more than a fine and community service, the Patriots’ owner is ramping up his legal team with two high-profile defense attorneys. Earlier this week, Kraft hired William A. Burck, who served as a lawyer in the George W. Bush White House and helped review the documents related to Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination hearing. Goldberger, the Florida attorney who’s represented serial child sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein –– and got him a sweetheart plea agreement that a judge ruled was illegally hidden from his victims –– is also defending Kraft against the charges.

With those two attorneys on board, it seems as if Kraft might be gearing up for a strong defense, the New York Times notes. He could argue he did not solicit anybody for sex and that Jupiter police violated his Fourth Amendment rights during a traffic stop following his first alleged visit to the Orchids of Asia Day Spa. Police asked for Kraft’s identification, even though he was not driving the vehicle.

It’s also likely Kraft, 77, is hellbent on sealing the surveillance video that law enforcement says shows him engaging in sex acts with two workers at the spa. 

The NFL, meanwhile, says it will continue to gather evidence before reaching a decision on Kraft’s discipline. 

This post has been updated.