"In open areas of the yacht there was dancing (by the strippers)," St. Pierre testified. "Unfortunately, I did participate in that. I'm sorry I did it. I've apologized to my wife. We took things too far. We got out of control.
"It was not a good time in my life and I'm sorry for it, but I'll tell you this: It was never meant as a kickback or a bribe for anybody."
Update: The rest of this amounts to a game of "What did the lawyers know and when did they know it?" Although maybe a good rule of thumb would be, if you have to hire a big law firm and ask them if what you're doing in illegal, you're probably doing something illegal. This is particularly true if part of what you're doing involves paying for sex acts on a boat.
I'm going to ask my doctor if I can eat 20 bacon donuts a day for six months and not have a heart attack. The doctor might say, "It's possible." Can I sue for malpractice?
Upperdate: Starting to believe those who say the government's real target in all of this is Ciber.
Ciber's president for state and local contracts, Ed Burns, "asked me and (Imagine employee) Dwaine Hodges to go to San Francisco to assist them with their (bid)," St. Pierre testified. "I would have done that for Northrop Grumman. If any (Government Services Administration) vendor wanted facts I would have helped with the facts."
St. Pierre's NetMethods also got government contracts working under Ciber in other locations, such as Cook County, Ill., and the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality in Jackson, Miss.
In fact, while the government alleges that money St. Pierre made from the city of New Orleans through Imagine was used to pay Meffert a first NetMethods check of $38,000 in October 2004, St. Pierre said that came from direct business NetMethods already had in Mississippi.
St. Pierre said that Meffert named NetMethods and they formed it as a way for the two friends to be in business together outside the city of New Orleans, even while Meffert was a city official.
"Ed Burns always considered us strategic partners," St. Pierre said. "To me, that meant I'll help you where I can and you help me wherever you can. We knew our future at the city would not be a long future. So our goal was to build our business outside of the city."