Reprinted with permission from Alternet
Federal agents investigating Florida Republican Congressman Matt Gaetz for possibly underaged sex trafficking and for a possible sexual relationship with an underaged girl were able to get a federal judge to sign off on a search warrant and execute that warrant, seizing his iPhone late last year.
"Gaetz's predicament as the subject of a serious investigation became clearer this winter when federal agents executed a search warrant and seized his iPhone, Politico reports, "according to interviews with three people who were told of the matter by Gaetz, who changed his phone number in late December."
"Around that time, the sources said, federal agents also seized his former girlfriend's phone before she went into work at a state agency in the morning. She declined comment."
It may not be unprecedented but it is extremely unusual for a sitting member of Congress to be served with a search warrant for a highly sensitive item like a cell phone.
Politico also details Gaetz's 2018 trip to the Bahamas, where he "was joined by two GOP allies: Halsey Beshears, then a state legislator, and Jason Pirozzolo, a hand surgeon and Republican fundraiser for DeSantis, according to three sources, including one who was part of the group."
"Also among those on the trip: the former minor who is key to the investigation, whose presence on the trip was previously unreported. According to one of the women in the group who spoke on condition of anonymity, everyone on the trip was over the age of 18 — including the woman in question, who had turned 18 years old months before the trip, she said."
"No one on the trip engaged in prostitution, the source said," Politico adds.
Gaetz has denied any wrongdoing and as previously reported has obtained two high-powered attorneys.