Matt Gaetz news – live: Congressman speaks out on Fox News amid claims he had sexual relationship with teenager
Republican congressman Matt Gaetz is reportedly being investigated over allegations he had a relationship with a 17-year-old girl, according to The New York Times.
Quoting three people familiar with the matter, the Times reported that the investigation began in the final months of the Trump administration under attorney general William Barr.
They are reportedly looking into whether the rising GOP star and close ally to Donald Trump had a sexual relationship with the teenager two years ago and whether he paid for her travel across state lines, in violation of sex trafficking laws.
Mr Gaetz told the Times that his lawyers had been in contact with the Justice Department and that they were told he was a subject, but not the target, of an investigation, which is reported to be focused on a political ally in Florida.
“I only know that it has to do with women,” Mr Gaetz told the newspaper. “I have a suspicion that someone is trying to recategorize my generosity to ex-girlfriends as something more untoward.”
In a tweet late Tuesday, the Florida congressman said his family has been victim to an organized crime extortion threat involving an ex-Department of Justice official seeking $25m.
“We have been cooperating with federal authorities in this matter and my father has even been wearing a wire at the FBI’s direction to catch these criminals,” he said.
Gaetz said no part of the allegations were true and called on the DOJ to “immediately release the tapes” that implicate the former DOJ official.
BREAKING: Matt Gaetz investigated over claims he had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old, report says
Matt Gaetz, a Republican congressman from Florida and close ally of former president Donald Trump, is being investigated over allegations that he had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old and paid her to travel with him, the New York Times reported.
The investigation is said to be focused on whether Mr Gaetz violated sex trafficking laws, the newspaper said, citing three people briefed on it.
It is reportedly part of a larger probe into Joel Greenberg, a Florida official and political ally of Mr Gaetz who was indicted last summer on child sex trafficking charges.
Justice Department investigators are reportedly looking into encounters between Mr Gaetz and the girl that were alleged to have taken place two years ago, when the girl was 17.