Joel Greenberg, an indicted longtime associate of Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz, said they both paid to have sex with an underage girl in a letter and text messages obtained by The Daily Beast.
Greenberg, a former Florida tax official charged with a litany of crimes including child sex trafficking, wrote a confession letter that he shared with longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone in a bid to get a pardon during former President Donald Trump’s final weeks in office, according to the report.
Greenberg said in the letter and in messages to Stone that he and Gaetz both paid to have sex with a teenage girl. Greenberg said the men thought the girl was 19 but later learned she was 17 from an “anonymous” tip.
Greenberg offered to pay Stone up to $300,000 in bitcoin for his assistance in getting a pardon from Trump. But the White House ultimately rejected the bid and Greenberg and Stone both questioned why Gaetz did not try to help Greenberg land a pardon given his own exposure, according to messages published by the Daily Beast.
“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 a letter he shared with Stone, referring to the 17-year-old.
“From time to time, gas money or gifts, rent or partial tuition payments were made to several of these girls, including the individual who was not yet 18. I did see the acts occur firsthand and Venmo transactions, Cash App or other payments were made to these girls on behalf of the Congressman,” he added.
Greenberg told Stone that he fired his lawyers because they pressed him to accept a plea deal and testify against Gaetz.
“My lawyers that I fired, know the whole story about MG’s involvement,” Greenberg wrote to Stone on Dec. 21. “They know he paid me to pay the girls and that he and I both had sex with the girl who was underage.”
Greenberg rejected the plea deal and pushed for a pardon, writing multiple versions of a confession letter intended to score a reprieve from the White House. But Greenberg stressed that neither he nor Gaetz were aware the girl was underage at the time.
“Immediately I called the congressman and warned him to stay clear of this person and informed him she was underage,” Greenberg wrote. “He was equally shocked and disturbed by this revelation.”
Greenberg said he “confronted” the teenager and told her “how serious of a situation this was, how many people she put in danger.”
“She apologized and recognized that by lying about her age, she endangered many people,” he added. “There was no further contact with this individual until after her 18th birthday.”
But Greenberg resumed contact with the girl after her birthday, and paid her using Venmo five months later, according to the report.
A PR firm hired by Gaetz denied the report.
“Congressman Gaetz has never paid for sex nor has he had sex with a 17 year old as an adult,” the statement said. “We are now one month after your outlet and others first reported such lies, and no one has gone on record to directly accuse him of either. Politico, however, has reported Mr. Greenberg threatening to make false accusations against others, which seems noteworthy for your story and in fact sounds like the entirety of your story. Congressman Gaetz has had no role in advocating for or against a pardon for Greenberg and doubts such a pardon was ever even considered.”
Stone admits to pardon bid:
Stone admitted to the Daily Beast that he and Greenberg discussed a pardon but denied that he solicited money from him. But the messages show that he expected a large payment from the politician.
“If I get you $250k in Bitcoin would that help or is this not a financial matter,” Greenberg said in one message.
“I understand all of this and have taken it into consideration,” Stone replied. “I will know more in the next 24 hours I cannot push too hard because of the nonsense surrounding pardons.”
Later, in January, Stone told Greenberg, “I hope you are prepared to wire me $250,000 because I am feeling confident.”
Greenberg said that he would throw in an extra $50,000 if Stone could get the pardon that day.
Stone urged Greenberg to play up his support for Trump in the letter and gave him other advice.
“I will review it with them and give you a budget. This is very doable and the time is now,” Stone wrote.
But Stone later told Greenberg that White House counsel Pat Cipollone had rejected his bid and questioned why Gaetz did not help.
Stone told the Daily Beast there may be “copies of correspondence between me and Mr. Greenberg,” but questioned if they were unedited and accurate.
“I made no formal or informal effort in regard to a pardon for Mr. Greenberg,” Stone said. “I recall requesting a document explaining his prosecution The [sic] details of which I was unfamiliar with… I never requested or received a penny from Mr. Greenberg. I recall him offering to retain me and I declined. To be clear I did advocate pardons for a number of people who I had [sic] been unfairly treated by the justice system and was compensated by no one for doing so.”