NEW YORK -- Jessica Hahn insisted yesterday she was a virgin when she had sex in 1980 with two TV preachers and angrily accused two men who claim to have been her lovers of turning on her after she "tried to help them."
In an interview at the Plaza Hotel, the former church secretary also proudly, at times almost defiantly, defended her topless pictures in Playboy. Hahn, 28, said she wanted everyone to know: "Jessica Hahn is someone that God created, a woman that should be seen as something soft and pretty . . . not abused.
"I want to be seen as Jessica Hahn -- someone who's free at last. I am what I am. I believe in myself. I have no problems with the pictures or anything else," she said.
The current issue of Playboy features a 10-page layout of Hahn with breasts bared and an article about her involvement in the sex scandal that toppled TV evangelist Jim Bakker from the PTL ministry. She claims Bakker and another TV preacher, John Wesley Fletcher, forced her to have sex with them in a Florida hotel in 1980.
Bakker fell in disgrace from the PTL pulpit after revelations the ministry had agreed to pay Hahn $265,000 to hush up her encounter with the evangelist. She had said she was a virgin when she was assaulted by the PTL preacher.
But a story in the New York Post claimed yesterday she was sexually experienced.
Two men told the Post they became her lovers several years after the hotel tryst. One said he was married and she knew it, but didn't care. Hahn revealed to one of the men that she wasn't a virgin before her encounter with Bakker, the Post said.
Hahn yesterday insisted it was "absolutely true -- absolutely" that she had never had sex until she was allegedly attacked by the preachers. "These are acquaintances. I did not sleep with them. In fact, I tried to help them," said Hahn, who did not say how she was helping the men.
Meanwhile, Phone Programs, a New York-based company, announced yesterday that beginning this morning, people can call a 900 number to hear Jim and Tammy Bakker's side of the PTL scandal.
The number will also feature the Bakkers speaking about such diverse topics as their future plans, Tammy Bakker's record album and her recipe for sloppy Joes.
Callers will be charged $1.50 for the first minute and 35 cents for each additional minute. The Bakkers will "share in the revenue," according to Phone Programs Vice Chairman Fred Wiener, but he would not name a figure.