DOJ prosecutors recommend against charging Rep. Gaetz in sex-trafficking probe
September 23, 2022 at 18:58
(CNN) Prosecutors have recommended against charging Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz in a federal sex-trafficking investigation, according to a source familiar with the matter.
The recommendation comes in part because prosecutors have questions over whether the central witnesses in the long-running investigation would be perceived as credible before a jury, the source said.
Senior Justice Department officials have not made a final decision on whether to charge Gaetz, according to the source.
CNN has previously reported that the department was facing a looming deadline to bring charges so as not to interfere with an election, which is required under Justice Department policy.
Gaetz is up for reelection in November.
The Florida congressman was under investigation over allegations involving sex trafficking and prostitution, including whether Gaetz had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl.
Gaetz has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.
There have been indications that the Justice Department's case might be in trouble.
In July, prosecutors agreed to allow a key witness and cooperator in the probe, Gaetz's close friend Joel Greenberg, to proceed to sentencing in December on charges including soliciting sex from a minor.
The Justice Department had sought repeated delays in his sentencing in anticipation of his assistance with the Gaetz investigation.