The Department of Justice (DOJ) has decided not to charge Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) in its sex-trafficking investigation into him, the congressman’s office said Wednesday.
The office said in a statement that the DOJ told Gaetz’s attorneys that it had concluded its probe and will not charge Gaetz with any crimes.
The investigation stemmed from allegations that the congressman had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl, with the DOJ looking into if Gaetz violated sex trafficking laws in paying for her to travel with him, including across state lines.
The probe was part of a larger investigation into Gaetz’s ally and former Florida tax collector Joel Greenberg, who pleaded guilty in 2021 to six federal crimes, including sex trafficking of a minor, identity theft and wire fraud.
Greenberg was sentenced to 11 years in prison in December. He agreed to cooperate with the DOJ’s investigation as part of his plea agreement.
But the investigation into Gaetz hit a roadblock over concerns about the credibility of two witnesses, one of whom was Greenberg. Career attorneys reportedly recommended to the DOJ in September that the department not charge Gaetz based on those witness credibility issues.
Prosecutors were also worried that testimony from the girl with whom Gaetz allegedly had the relationship would not stand up in front of a jury.
Gaetz has denied the allegations that he had a relationship with an underage girl and said he regrets his association with Greenberg.
The Hill has reached out to the DOJ for comment.
Gaetz had reportedly sought a preemptive pardon from then-President Trump over the sex trafficking allegations against him, according to testimony from a former White House aide given to the House select committee that investigated the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol insurrection.