NBC News: A sex trafficking investigation of Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., began with an inquiry into an associate of his who's awaiting trial on trafficking, stalking and identity fraud charges.
The associate, Joel Micah Greenberg — who Gaetz once suggested should run for Congress in Florida — was charged with additional counts Wednesday stemming from his three years as an elected county tax official.
"Greenberg used his position as Seminole County Tax Collector to engage in, and facilitate, the commission of federal offenses, including sex trafficking of a child, illegally obtaining personal information from a motor vehicle record ... illegally producing identification and false identification documents, aggravated identity theft, wire fraud and money laundering," federal prosecutors said in the newly unsealed third superseding indictment.
Greenberg has pleaded not guilty to the trafficking, stalking and identity fraud charges, and he is scheduled to be arraigned on the wire fraud and money laundering charges next week.
"Right now we're preparing for the upcoming trial date in June. Joel maintains his innocence and has previously pleaded not guilty," said Fritz Scheller, Greenberg's attorney.
Law enforcement officials confirmed to NBC News that the investigation of Gaetz, who has not been charged, originated from the investigation of Greenberg, which has taken numerous turns since he was arrested in June over allegations that he slimed a rival candidate for tax collector.