Saturday November 17, 2012

CORTLAND, N.Y. (AP) -- A district attorney in upstate New York has admitted that he acted in pornographic movies in the 1970s then lied when questioned about it during his second campaign.

Mark Suben, the DA in Cortland County near Syracuse since 2008, held a news conference Friday to say he had lied about his past in the days before this year's election.

"Recently materials have been circulated alleging that I was involved in the adult film industry about 40 years ago in New York. Those allegations are true," he said. "I was an actor in adult films for a short period in the early 70s. I was also an actor in other venues including off Broadway, soap operas and commercial advertisements."

He apologized for his actions and said he used "bad judgment" by acting in porn and by lying about it. He wouldn't take questions, including whether he should resign. On his way out of the news conference, several people said "You lied to me, Mark."

Suben's spokeswoman, Aimee Milks, said Suben will not resign.

WSTM-TV in Syracuse published a story Friday that said Suben had acted under his name and the pseudonym Gus Thomas. That news story followed a posting on YouTube that compared images of Suben with Thomas.

"A few weeks ago, when asked, I denied this to members of the press," Suben said. "I regret that and I apologize for it. I was shocked and embarrassed to be confronted with this so many years later.


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I was embarrassed for my family and friends who have stood by me. I also denied my actions to my family, my friends and my staff."

The IMDB online database says Suben and Thomas are linked and classified as alternate names. The name Gus Thomas appears in films such as "Lecher," and "The Love Witch." Mark Suben appears in the credits for the non-pornographic 1976 movie "Angels."

Suben has been an acting city court judge, city corporation counsel and a county attorney. He is past president of the Cortland County Bar Association. He graduated from the University of Rochester, the University of Wisconsin and Fordham Law School, according to the biography on his election website. The bio says he worked seven years as an assistant district attorney in Bronx County then moved to Syracuse. He has taught criminal trial practice as an adjunct professor for 17 years at Syracuse University Law School.