How does a woman stand by her man when he’s accused of this
Yesterday former MP Craig Thompson was finally found guilty of spending $400,000 of stolen union funds on hookers, pornography and other expenses. During the trial his lawyer admitted to his client’s use of prostitutes but argued they were legitimate expenses.
Like many other women, I’m sure, my thoughts immediately turned to his wife Zoe Arnold who continues to stand by her man. How? Why?
In Melbourne Magistrate’s Court, Magistrate Charlie Rozencwajg said it was an “affront to common sense” that payments to escorts could ever be considered a legitimate expense. Thompson has been found guilty numerous theft and fraud charges, including:
* Passing off a $770 receipt for sex with a prostitute called Alina as a dinner function;
* Spending at least $6000 on escorts;
* Paying for pornographic movies in hotel rooms.
He is now facing five years in jail and the union will seek restitution to cover some or all of the money he stole. There are also calls for a Royal Commission into union corruption.
Zoe, Thompson's third wife, is still pledging to stand by him. She was pregnant with their first child in 2009 when her husband was first accused of misusing union funds. Yesterday she was at their home on the Central Coast caring for their two daughters, Matilda, five and Adelaide, three, when her husband was convicted.
In 2012 Arnold told Australian Women's Weekly she immediately confronted her husband about the allegations when they first started circulating. He denied them and she believed him.
“I told Craig the day the first story had come out that life would be much easier for us if he confessed to visiting brothels and admitted he had used his work credit card," she said. "Craig looked me straight in the eye and said, ‘But I didn’t do it’, a statement he has repeated publicly and privately again and again.”
I can understand how she believed his initial declarations of innocence. Isn't that how it normally goes in stories like this? You find out something terrible about your partner, confront them and their initial response is deny, deny, deny. But despite his elaborate attempts to protest his innocence this is a woman, a mother of two, who has been dealing with mounting evidence that her husband is, at the very least, a long time user of prostitutes.