Word on the DOJ investigation into GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz and associate Joel Greenberg over possible violations of federal sex-trafficking laws has been quiet over the past couple of weeks. That changed Thursday with an update from the Daily Beast. It got its hands on three drafts of a confessional letter—two typed and one handwritten—that it says were penned by Greenberg during the last few months of the Trump presidency and admit that he and Gaetz paid for sex, including with a 17-year-old girl. The confession seems to have been written in an attempt to get Trump ally Roger Stone to help Greenberg secure a pardon from the then-president. "On more than one occasion, this individual was involved in sexual activities with several of the other girls, the congressman from Florida's 1st Congressional District, and myself," Greenberg wrote in reference to the minor, noting that she and other girls were given "gas money" and other "gifts," as well as rent and partial tuition payments.
Greenberg writes both he and Gaetz initially thought the girl was 19, and that they were "shocked and disturbed" when they found out her true age. He notes they steered clear of her after that—until she turned 18, when Greenberg reached out to her again. In texts between Greenberg and Stone that were also seen by the Daily Beast, the former offered to send Stone $250,000 in bitcoin to help expedite a pardon. Greenberg also wrote to Stone that "MG" had paid him to pay multiple girls for sex, and that "he and I both had sex with the girl who was underage." In a text, Stone tells the Daily Beast that Greenberg tried to recruit him to help secure a pardon, but that he didn't intercede; the texts suggest otherwise. A PR firm representing Gaetz says in a statement: "Congressman Gaetz has never paid for sex nor has he had sex with a 17 year old as an adult. ... Gaetz has had no role in advocating for or against a pardon for Greenberg and doubts such a pardon was ever even considered." (More here.)