Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) is under investigation for an alleged sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl, The New York Times reports.
Federal investigators are reportedly examining Gaetz’s alleged payment for the teen’s travel alongside him, which could violate sex trafficking laws.
“Investigators are examining whether Mr. Gaetz violated federal sex trafficking laws,” the Times reports. “A variety of federal statutes make it illegal to induce someone under 18 to travel over state lines to engage in sex in exchange for money or something of value. It was not clear how Mr. Gaetz met the girl, believed to be 17 at the time of encounters about two years ago that investigators are scrutinizing, according to two of the people familiar with the matter.”
The investigation of Gaetz is part of a larger investigation into one of his political allies, a Florida official named Joel Greenberg.
Greenberg was indicted last year on a number of charges including sex trafficking of a child and financially supporting people in exchange for sex, at least one of whom was an underage girl, according to the Times. He visited White House with Gaetz at least once in 2019.
No charges have been filed against Gaetz.
“I only know that it has to do with women. I have a suspicion that someone is trying to recategorize my generosity to ex-girlfriends as something more untoward,” he told the Times in a statement.