"We were offered millions for that stupid tape," he tells PEOPLE. He says he and his wife Cheri found the tape in "a box of trash filled with crinkled paper and tapes" left behind by Hunter. He says they never considered selling it: "We couldn't live with ourselves."
Young, 43, served as an aide to Edwards for more than nine years. Just before the 2008 presidential primaries began, he agreed – at Edwards' behest, he says – to publicly claim paternity for the baby being carried by Hunter, 45. Young details the deception in his new tell-all book, The Politician, out today.
On Jan. 21, Edwards – who told PEOPLE on Jan. 27 that he still "deeply cares" about Elizabeth – admitted that he is the father of Hunter's 2-year-old daughter, Frances Quinn.
We Just Fell on the FloorYoung says that when he and Cheri first watched the sex tape – which was marked "special" – "we just fell on the floor. We were agape." Adds Cheri: "It was disappointing to see the person you had such hopes and dreams for be so careless."
Now Hunter is fighting back. On Jan. 28, she filed a motion against Young in a North Carolina court. It seeks the return of photos and videos, including one she says she made in 2006 while working for Edwards.
"In or about September 2006, using my video camera, I authored a personal video recording that depicted matters of a very private and personal nature," Hunter wrote in an affidavit filed Thursday. "In 2006, I was also having an intimate relationship with Edwards."
Also in the affidavit, Hunter says the tape was in a "hat box" in her rental home and that it was taken without her consent to "generate publicity."
Another point of confusion: Young said in The Politician that the naked woman depicted in the video was pregnant. Hunter had Quinn in 2008, more than a year after she says her "private" video was made.
Young says he cannot comment on the "ongoing litigation" in regard to Hunter. A court date was set for Monday, the same day Young is scheduled to give his first live television interview.
"We may lose the battle only because we don't have the money or power that John and Elizabeth do," says Young. "We also don't have friends in the judicial system like they do. But we do know the truth and we have the determination to get it out."
For more of the Edwards drama, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE