Public defender falls in love with Peruvian painter. Problem is,
Peruvian cant get a work visa. Theyre a gay couple, so the marriage
= citizenship formula is out of the question. Public defender
agonizes: My country? My love? Up steps a friend (who also happens to
be a female, and a subordinate in the Public Defenders Office), who
agrees to a sham Vegas wedding. (Witness to the affair: the wifes
boyfriend a city prosecutor!) Couples return to St. Louis and carry
on with life per usual. Until the U.S. Attorneys Office gets wind of
the scheme and charges public defender and painter with one count
apiece of conspiracy to commit marriage fraud. Indictment comes down
June 1. Perhaps needless to say, Eric Affholter is no longer the St.
Louis public defender. His subordinate, Collette Lewis, resigned.
Pedro Cerna-Rojas, the Peruvian painter, hasnt been seen around
these parts since. Wasnt meant to be.