[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Tuesday, 10 July 2007, 11:20 GMT 12:20 UK
US senator admits 'serious sin'
David Vitter (file image)
Mr Vitter did not specify the exact nature of his 'sin'
A Republican senator has apologised for "a very serious sin in my past" after his phone number was linked to an alleged Washington prostitution ring.

David Vitter, a Louisiana senator, said he had asked for and received forgiveness from God and his wife.

Deborah Palfrey, dubbed the "DC Madam", faces charges of running a lucrative city prostitution ring for 13 years.

Ms Palfrey, who says she provided a legal escort service, has said she will call prominent clients to testify.

Mr Vitter's statement, confirmed to the Associated Press by his spokesman, said his telephone number was included on the phone records published on her website on Monday.

The records date from before Mr Vitter ran for the Senate in 2004.

High-profile clients

In the statement, he did not provide details about the exact nature of his "sin", saying he wanted it to remain private out of respect for his family.

"This was a very serious sin in my past for which I am, of course, completely responsible," Mr Vitter said.

"Several years ago, I asked for and received forgiveness from God and my wife in confession and marriage counselling."

He added that he offered his "deep and sincere apologies" to all he had disappointed.

Ms Palfrey has named other high-profile clients, including former deputy Secretary of State Randall Tobias, who resigned shortly after confirming he had been a client.

'DC Madam' vows to name clients
30 Apr 07 |  Americas
US woman 'to share escort files'
13 Mar 07 |  Americas

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific