Joel Greenberg, the former Florida county tax collector and righthand man of Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), will plead guilty to sex trafficking as part of his plea deal with the Justice Department, according to Insider.
It was reported Thursday that Greenberg was ready to plead guilty to some of the initial string of 33 charges against him. Now, Insider reports that the charge sheet has been shrunk down to just six as part of his plea deal. Charges are said to include sex-trafficking, wire fraud, and identity theft.
The agreement will come as deeply unwelcome news for Gaetz, who is under federal investigation for his alleged involvement in the Greenberg case. According to Insider, Greenberg will agree to give his full cooperation to the government in his case and other potential related crimes, meaning he could spill to the investigators looking into his links with Gaetz.
Last month, when Greenberg’s defense attorney, Fritz Scheller, first floated the idea that his client would soon accept a plea agreement, he commented: “I’m sure Matt Gaetz is not feeling very comfortable today.”
Greenberg has already dragged the congressman into his case.
In a confession letter he wrote in the dying days of the Trump presidency in a failed attempt to win a pardon, Greenberg claimed that he and Gaetz had sex with a 17-year-old girl, and described how he would set up paid sexual encounters for the Florida congressman using Venmo and Cash App.
The Daily Beast previously reported records that showed Greenberg paying more than 40 women through the apps, as well as Gaetz’s repeated payments to Greenberg. One payment was labeled with a nickname for the 17-year-old girl that Greenberg claims he and Gaetz had sex with.
Twelve women previously told The Daily Beast about their encounters with Greenberg, with most saying that they felt pressured to drink or take drugs at his parties before sex. Four of the anonymous women said Greenberg pressured them them into having sex, and one said that she only had sex with Greenberg after being given “an endless supply of drugs.”
Gaetz denies paying for sex and hasn’t been charged with any crime. Greenberg is due in court next week to plead guilty.