ORLANDO, Fla. — Rep. Matt Gaetz’s ex-girlfriend testified Wednesday before a federal grand jury investigating him for sex crimes, a major development that suggests the Department of Justice may be moving closer to indicting him.
The ex-girlfriend, whose name is being withheld by NBC News to respect her privacy, has been in talks for months with prosecutors about an immunity deal.
Legal sources familiar with the case say Gaetz is being investigated for three distinct crimes: sex trafficking the 17-year-old; violating the Mann Act, which prohibits taking women across state lines for prostitution; and obstructing justice.
Gaetz, R-Fla., has not been charged with a crime and has denied all accusations, saying he never paid for sex and never had sex with a minor when he was an adult.
He has pleaded guilty to charges of identity theft, stalking, wire fraud, conspiracy to bribe a public official and sex trafficking of a minor.
According to one source familiar with the case, the alleged sex-trafficking victim told investigators at one point that Gaetz had sex with her.
It’s on that call that Gaetz is suspected of obstructing justice, which federal prosecutors are investigating, according to law enforcement sources. »