In his eyes, disgraced military attaché Alfred Keating is as much as a victim as those he covertly filmed in the toilet of the New Zealand embassy in Washington DC.
Keating was sentenced this week to home detention, with the judge telling him: "You have no remorse whatsoever and you are not innocent."
Before he headed home to Whangārei to begin his sentence, the Weekend Herald offered Keating the opportunity to explain his actions in his only interview.
Supported by his Canada-based partner Jamie Hodge - with whom he has been in a long-distance relationship for eight years - he used it to continue to plead his case despite the overwhelming evidence, the decision of a jury and the criticism of Judge Robert Ronayne, who described the crime as "bizarre and reprehensible".
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But Keating says he is innocent. In effect, he is the "absurdly unlucky man" Crown prosecutor Henry Steele said he would have to be, given the court heard a DNA profile found he was 10,000 million times more likely to be the culprit than a random New Zealander.
"I feel their hurt as a victim," Keating told the Weekend Herald. "But to sit in court and see it was me when I legitimately went in there to use that bathroom as I did most days was horrifying.
"And yet I am seen as the culprit, the offender; not as a victim - that's very hurtful and embarrassing."
"I echo everything [the victims] say because I feel many of those feelings of trepidation using a public bathroom. I was the one projected on the screen. It's like, who is watching me? Am I safe in here?"
Forensic psychiatrist Dr Justin Barry-Walsh told the Weekend Herald if someone is to deny something, the best thing to do is convince themselves it didn't happen.
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Barry-Walsh was not associated with Keating's case and spoke in general terms.
"It's very common. It's not unusual for high-functioning, intelligent men to be the most self-destructive and to disregard long-term consequences."
Keating was sentenced to four and a half months' home detention at Auckland District Court this week.
He was convicted by a jury who took little more than four hours to reach a verdict after a two-week trial in April.
Keating told the Weekend Herald he would not appeal his sentence. It would be detrimental to the victims, the Defence Force and Hodge, who stood by him throughout the trial.
Also, the legal case has "wiped" him out financially and his employment opportunities are scant.
"Part of me would like to [appeal]. It's about principle but I guess it would be a hollow victory given the damage it's done to me."
Keating says the day he was charged his "life ended".
"Everything I had done for the last 40 years was erased overnight and everything I intended to do with the rest of my life with Jamie [his partner] was now in doubt."
"Your reputation is everything and I have lost that. People who know Fred Keating would speak extremely high of me in a reputational and professional sense – the ability to do his job for the people under his control.
"If the judge had said four and a half years' sentence, quite frankly that would pale into insignificance to the hurt I am feeling. The severity of those non-tangible punishments ... reputation, honour and respect have been taken away from me."
The former naval officer enjoyed an unblemished 40-year career before he planted a covert camera in a unisex bathroom at the diplomatic building in the American capital during July 2017.
Keating was found guilty of attempting to make an intimate visual recording of another person. At Tuesday's sentencing, Judge Ronayne said Keating "did so for [his] own sexual gratification".
"I certainly would not. I would have no motivation," Keating told the Weekend Herald. "I have a great relationship with Jamie. I am a deeply private person and I respect the privacy of others.
"It never came out in the trial 'Fred Keating has a tendency to do perverse acts and he doesn't treat people with respect'. I can't share remorse for something I didn't do. I think that would be disingenuous."
Barry-Walsh says remorse is a subjective concept. Speaking in general terms and not about Keating specifically, Barry-Walsh said the inability to say sorry was a "human condition".
"When people say they haven't done something there are two possibilities," he said. "They have done it and they are lying or they haven't done it.
"If someone is baldly stating 'I didn't do it and I have got nothing to be sorry about' and the evidence is overwhelming that they did, then they have a real problem."
Keating was the face of diplomacy and negotiating strategy for the Defence Force to one of New Zealand's crucial allies.
The 60-year-old met his partner on a business trip in Ottawa where she works as a business development and government relations consultant. She left for Canada yesterday.
She said her first impression was that Keating was "cold and unapproachable".
She has never questioned Keating's innocence.
"It was preposterous. The first thing I said to him was 'I know it wasn't you because if you had intended to do something like that, it would've been done in such a way the camera wouldn't have fallen down'.
"It would have never been discovered. He is incredibly detailed."
Hodge flew back to Canada yesterday, but the couple are determined to stay together despite the travel difficulties created by Keating's conviction.
"I love Fred. He's an engineer. They think in a certain way - they are not about emotions or feelings and things like that.
"But in terms of honour, trust and integrity and morals, I have known him professionally and personally. He has always put the Navy and government first. It's always been above everything - above any relationship, above family - it's all about doing the right thing."
Keating grew up in Mt Albert and says he devoted his entire life serving his country.
"My dad left the Navy before I was born and had these old picture books about sailors in the Second World War. That sowed the seed. I was the youngest Navy cadet at 11 and became a sailor when I was 16."
He joined the Navy in 1976 and was posted on HMNZS Otago. He rose through the ranks, becoming Assistant Chief of Navy then Commander of the Royal Naval Base at Devonport before being posted as a senior defence attaché in Washington.
He told the Weekend Herald the Embassy was dysfunctional. At his home there were strange goings-on and bizarre thefts prompting him to install cameras at home after a spate of bizarre thefts.
"The first thing was the Edmonds cookbook, a KitchenAid mixer and unexplained things in the trash," he said.
The camera he installed in the bathroom led to his leaving the Defence Force two days after pleading not guilty in March last year.
In court this week, Benjamin King, the deputy secretary of the Americas and Asia Group for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said Keating's offending had potentially risked bilateral relationships with the US which can take decades to cultivate.
King said Keating abused the trust of a "close-knit community" at the embassy.
Staff and their families were shocked, distressed and felt unsafe by such a violation of their privacy, he said.
The prosecution's case was primarily based on the recovered internet activity from Keating's computer and DNA found on the hidden camera's memory card. Environmental Science and Research Forensic scientist Sue Vintiner said the DNA found was "10,000 million more times likely" to belong to Keating than a random New Zealander.
CCTV footage and swipe card records from the diplomatic outpost were also used by the prosecution.
An analysis of Keating's computer found software drivers for the camera installed the same day the camera was found, along with several search results for the camera.
Keating said he had had no support from the Embassy.
"I understand they have no reason not to believe Fred Keating did this, but I am disappointed at those people who turned their back on me who I've helped."
Keating said he had his future planned, financial security, his reputation and job opportunities. He has a daughter in the Navy and "had everything going for me" and says he would never have put any of that at risk.
"I will always be remembered as the guy that put the camera in the bathroom. There is no going back."
He will spend four months and 15 days on home detention.
"Everything was taken away - it was like I had just dropped off a cliff," Keating told the Weekend Herald.
At sentencing, Judge Ronayne said: "The height from which you have fallen is self-inflicted."