Informant says Matt Gaetz paid her for sex as she gives details to House Ethics Committee, report says

Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz has denied any wrongdoing, calling ethics probe ‘Soviet’

Gustaf Kilander
Washington DC
Wednesday 19 June 2024 15:10 BST
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A witness has told the House Ethics Committee that Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz paid her for sex, a report alleges.

Investigators with the committee have conducted a number of interviews behind closed doors with women who were witnesses in the sex trafficking investigation conducted by the Department of Justice, according to ABC News.

The investigators have spoken to at least half a dozen women who are alleged to have attended parties also frequented by Gaetz. The women — some under subpoena — were reportedly paid by Joel Greenberg, who used to be Gaetz’s close friend. In 2022, Greenberg was sentenced to 11 years in federal prison after he pleaded guilty to several charges that included sex trafficking a minor and introducing the minor to other men, the outlet reported.

Sources told ABC that during the interviews, some witnesses were shown Venmo payments that they are alleged to have received from Gaetz and asked if they were for sex.

A woman told the panel that a payment from Gaetz was for sex, and others said they were paid to go to parties also attended by Gaetz that included drugs and sex, according to the sources.

Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz speaks at The People’s Convention, on June 15. A witness has told a House committee that Gaetz paid her for sex, according to a report.
Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz speaks at The People’s Convention, on June 15. A witness has told a House committee that Gaetz paid her for sex, according to a report. (EPA)

Gaetz has rejected all the allegations against him.

When reached for comment, a spokesperson for Gaetz referred to the congressman’s Monday post on X, in which he slammed the committee’s investigation and put the blame on former speaker Kevin McCarthy, with whom he has long had a personal feud. Gaetz led the effort to oust McCarthy last year.

“The House Ethics Committee has closed four probes into me, which emerged from lies intended solely to smear me,” Gaetz wrote on Monday. “Instead of working with me to ban Congressional stock trading, the Ethics Committee is now opening new frivolous investigations.”

He added: “They are doing this to avoid the obvious fact that every investigation into me ends the same way: my exoneration.”

“This is Soviet. Kevin McCarthy showed them the man, and they are now trying to find the crime,” he continued. “I work for Northwest Floridians who won’t be swayed by this nonsense and McCarthy and his goons know it.”

After an investigation that lasted years, the Department of Justice said last year that it would not bring charges against Gaetz. The House Ethics Committee has subpoenaed the department for information connected to its investigation into Gaetz but the DOJ has been reluctant to hand over its records, ABC reported.

The committee said on Tuesday that it’s looking into whether Gaetz tried to obstruct investigations, and also noted it’s dropping some parts of its investigation into him.

The panel said Gaetz has been the subject of an “unusual amount of public reporting.” It added that “much of that reporting has been inaccurate.”

Gaetz has rejected all the allegations against him even as the House Ethics Committee continues to investigate. He is seen here speaking outside Donald Trump’s trial in Manhattan.
Gaetz has rejected all the allegations against him even as the House Ethics Committee continues to investigate. He is seen here speaking outside Donald Trump’s trial in Manhattan. (Getty Images)

“Notwithstanding the difficulty in obtaining relevant information from Representative Gaetz and others, the Committee has spoken with more than a dozen witnesses, issued 25 subpoenas, and reviewed thousands of pages of documents in this matter,” the panel said. “Based on its review to date, the Committee has determined that certain of the allegations merit continued review.”

“During the course of its investigation, the Committee has also identified additional allegations that merit review,” it added.

The panel said it would continue to look into allegations that Gaetz “engaged in sexual misconduct and illicit drug use.”

The committee said it wouldn’t continue to review claims that Gaetz “may have shared inappropriate images or videos on the House floor, misused state identification records, converted campaign funds to personal use, and/or accepted a bribe or improper gratuity.”

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