Missouri taxpayers paid $200K in Greitens legal fees according to audit

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Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens listens to a question during an interview in his office at the Missouri Capitol Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018, in Jefferson City, Mo. Greitens discussed having an extramarital affair in 2015 before taking office. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Missouri audit report shows that taxpayers spent more than $200,000 to defend former Gov. Eric Greitens’ use of a self-deleting text message app.

A 2017 lawsuit alleged Greitens’ office used the app Confide to subvert Missouri’s open records laws. The case was dismissed in July.

Greitens resigned last year amid allegations of sexual misconduct and campaign violations.

The Kansas City Star reports that state Auditor Nicole Galloway conducted the routine audit. Galloway has launched a campaign to run for governor of Missouri as a democrat.

Her report, released Wednesday, states that most of the money funded private attorneys to represent the governor’s office in the lawsuit. Nearly $23,000 came from the state legal expense fund administered by the attorney general’s office. The governor’s office paid the remainder.

Neither the governor’s office nor the attorney general’s office responded to requests for comment.

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