Colin Powell is denying that he had an affair with a female Romanian politician after a hacker posted a series of personal emails sent between the two for a period of several years.
In a statement to the website The Smoking Gun, which was confirmed by ABC News, Powell acknowledges that his correspondences with Corina Cretu, 46, became “of a very personal nature” over the course of 10 years.
“Those type of emails ended a few years ago,” Powell, 72, wrote in the statement. “There was no affair then and there is not one now.”
The two met when Powell served as secretary of state during the Bush administration, and Cretu worked in various positions in the Romanian government. She is now a senator in the European Parliament.
Powell blames a hacker for sifting through his email for the correspondences and according to The Smoking Gun, the hacker, known as “Guccifer” made a series of posts on Powell’s Facebook page that linked to the emails and several photos that appear to have been sent by Cretu to Powell. The emails document correspondences dating as far back as 2011, and as recently as this Wednesday.
Guccifer also claimed responsibility for hacking the Bush family’s emails, including publicly releasing George W. Bush’s private self-portraits.
In an email to Cretu explaining the situation, Powell said that the hacker received his email after hacking in to President Bush’s account.
“Our security people have been chasing him for months,” Powell writes in the email to Cretu that was posted by the hacker online this week.
In that same message, sent on Tuesday, Powell asked Cretu to delete the emails between them.
“He may have lots of your emails, maybe not, so best to delete all between us,” Powell wrote. “He can’t get into my account so he looks for thing [sic] sent to me. Hope this doesn’t cause you any distress.”
According to copies of the emails and photos posted by the hacker on to Cryptome.org, a website that posts documents secret or illicit documents, Cretu wrote to Powell declaring her love for him on Nov. 14, 2011.
“I miss you, I hope to be at least a friend to you. I’ve loved you too, much, too, many years,” Cretu wrote in the message to Powell’s AOL account. “YOU were my greatest love of my life, butifond [sic] finally, a reaistc [sic] love.”
Powell said in his statement denying the affair that Cretu is now married, and though he has not seen her in “several years” they remain friends.
According to the hacked emails, Cretu expressed concerns about how she appears in those messages.
“I look now like a crazy woman who has been sending you emails all these years like an autist [sic],” she wrote to Powell on Tuesday. “It is not fair. But hope everything is well.”
A spokesman for Powell told ABC News Friday that the general has no further comment on the situation.