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Gaetz 'Wingman' Joel Greenberg Reportedly Seeking Plea Deal

Photo by Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Rep. Matt Gaetz's "wingman," Joel Greenberg, is expected to enter a plea deal with prosecutors and a federal court, according to multiple reports. Greenberg is facing dozens of "superseding indictments tied to stalking, illegally obtaining person information, identity theft, wire fraud, and sex trafficking of a minor," according to Tom Winter, NBC News Correspondent for Investigations.

It's not currently known if that plea deal includes a cooperation agreement, but either way, as CNN Congressional Correspondent Ryan Nobles reports, a "deal would put pressure Gaetz, as Greenberg would have to share what he knows about his friend and associate."

"Federal government lawyers and Greenberg's attorney told a judge the deal was not finalized but there is an expectation that within the next couple of months it could be resolved," CNN's Paul Reid adds.

New York Times Justice Department reporter Katie Benner, who co-wrote several of the Times' bombshell reports on Gaetz, adds a "deadline has been set for May 15."

Gaetz is being investigated by the DOJ, allegedly for possible child sex trafficking and for a possible sexual relationship with a 17-year old. On Wednesday news broke that the investigation includes his trip to the Bahamas, where a marijuana merchant, physician, and donor allegedly "may have paid" for airline flights, hotel stays, and female escorts.

Earlier this week Politico reported that Greenberg, a Florida tax collector had an office in Seminole County which "was the only one in the state where employees were armed with pistols and body armor. He wore his own law enforcement badge and carried a sidearm at tax collector conferences. He let people pay property taxes with Bitcoin. He tweeted Islamophobic comments, installed a remote-controlled sprinkler system to spray petition gatherers he didn't like, and doled out fat contracts to his groomsmen shortly after winning the usually humdrum Orlando-area office with a campaign to stop 'crony capitalism.'"

Gaetz and Greenberg "shared more than one girlfriend, according to interviews with eight friends and associates who know the two men. Gaetz described Greenberg as a 'wingman' to some acquaintances, and even promoted him as a potential congressional candidate. Now some suspect Greenberg might be cooperating with prosecutors to build a case against Gaetz."

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