- Federal prosecutors have granted Rep. Matt Gaetz's ex-girlfriend immunity in exchange for her testimony, CBS reported.
- A witness told CBS Gaetz's ex has information related to the DOJ's sex-trafficking and obstruction investigation into Gaetz.
- The Florida congressman has denied any wrongdoing.
Federal prosecutors have granted Rep. Matt Gaetz's former girlfriend immunity in exchange for her testimony, CBS News reported.
Gaetz's ex, whose name Insider is withholding to protect her privacy, testified before a grand jury as part of the Justice Department's federal sex-trafficking investigation into Gaetz last week.
She previously worked on Capitol Hill and was in an open relationship with Gaetz in 2017 and 2018. She also traveled with him and several others to the Bahamas in 2018 as part of a trip that has attracted investigators' scrutiny.
NBC reported last week that prosecutors are investigating Gaetz for three separate crimes: if he sex-trafficked the 17-year-old; if he violated the Mann Act, which prohibits the transportation of "any woman or girl for the purpose of prostitution or debauchery, or for any other immoral purpose" across state lines; and if he obstructed justice.
One witness told CBS News that the Florida congressman's ex-girlfriend has information related to the sex-trafficking probe and the obstruction inquiry.
With respect to the obstruction probe, investigators are said to be scrutinizing a three-way call after the investigation started between Gaetz, his ex, and another woman who was cooperating with federal authorities and who was reportedly recording the phone call. NBC reported that authorities suspect Gaetz of obstructing justice during that conversation, which took place last April, but he's denied the allegation.
The existence of the DOJ's investigation first became public last March, when The New York Times reported that investigators were examining if Gaetz had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old in 2019 and paid for her to travel with him. The inquiry had been underway for several months before it was reported on.
One person familiar with the conversations told The Times that Gaetz told some women to say that he paid for dinners and hotel rooms as part of their dates if anyone asked about the nature of their relationships.
People familiar with the encounters also told The Times that some of the men and women, including Gaetz, took MDMA before having sex, and that in some cases the Florida lawmaker asked the women to find others who may want to have sex with him and his friends.
Prosecutors notched a significant victory last May, when Gaetz's friend and longtime associate Joel Greenberg struck a plea deal and formally agreed to cooperate with the federal inquiry into Gaetz.
According to The New York Times, Greenberg gave prosecutors information about an "array of topics" since he first began cooperating in 2020, including telling them that he and Gaetz had interactions with women who were given cash and gifts in exchange for sex.
Gaetz and his father have confirmed the existence of the investigation. He has not been charged with a crime and has denied any wrongdoing, and he's also suggested that the department's investigation into him is part of a multimillion extortion scheme targeting his family.