Federal elections officials appeared to have finally closed the door on bogus allegations that Rep. Matt Gaetz was involved in sex trafficking.
Newsmax reported on Wednesday that the Federal Election Commission tossed out a complaint filed against Gaetz by Cris Dosev, a Republican who has twice challenged Gaetz for his Panhandle congressional seat.
Dosev claimed the Fort Walton Beach Republican wrongfully used campaign contributions to cover legal expenses related to a 2020 Justice Department investigation of the sex trafficking allegations.
Federal investigators ended the probe in February and declined to charge Gaetz because there was no evidence he had sex with a 17-year-old girl, as was alleged by an anonymous source. Gaetz repeatedly proclaimed his innocence.
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A former Gaetz friend, Joel Greenberg, pleaded guilty in 2021 to charges of trafficking a female minor to other adult men who had sex with her.
But investigators never could uncover evidence of Gaetz’s involvement, and the case lost steam when prosecutors determined two witnesses were not credible.
Politico reported that the FEC voted unanimously in August to ditch Dosev’s complaint.
It did so after its staff lawyers concluded that all of the available evidence indicated that roughly $200,000 paid to attorneys by the campaign benefitted the campaign, and not Gaetz personally.
Politico noted that FEC lawyers said Gaetz was under investigation for alleged misuse of campaign funds, and that his campaign could hire legal help to defend against that.
“Cris Dosev has lost every FEC complaint he has filed as a gadfly — and every election he has run in as a candidate, including two to me,” Gaetz said. “Here’s hoping he finds less expensive, more productive hobbies for himself going forward.”
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