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Matt Gaetz associate likely to plead guilty in criminal case

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A former Florida tax official is expected to plead guilty in the criminal case that spawned the sex trafficking investigation into Rep. Matt Gaetz, the official’s lawyers and prosecutors said in court Thursday.

Joel Greenberg, the former Seminole County Tax Collector, had previously pleaded not guilty to several charges including stalking, wire fraud and sex trafficking of a minor.

In a brief hearing in Orlando, Greenberg’s lawyer, Fritz Scheller, and federal prosecutors told the judge they expect him to strike a plea deal, but the parties did not signal if Greenberg was expected to cooperate in the investigation against Gaetz, R-Fla.

“I expect this case to resolve with a plea before the June trial date,” Scheller told the judge.

Both sides agreed to a date of May 15 as the deadline to enter a plea.

Federal investigators are looking into whether Gaetz paid women to travel to the Bahamas for sex, NBC News reported Wednesday night. Investigators are also looking into whether Gaetz and Greenberg used the internet to search for women they could pay for sex.

Gaetz, who has not been charged with any crime, has repeatedly denied wrongdoing.

Legal experts said Greenberg would be a key witness in the investigation against Gaetz if the former tax official agrees to cooperate in the probe.

Gaetz said in an op-ed published Monday that he is not a criminal and that he will not be resigning.

“Since I’m taking my turn under the gun, let me address the allegations against me directly. First, I have never, ever paid for sex. And second, I, as an adult man, have not slept with a 17-year-old,” Gaetz wrote in The Washington Examiner.

He said the “bizarre” claims were made after he “decided to take on the most powerful institutions in the Beltway.”



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Nicola Sturgeon lifts travel ban as Scots to resume meeting outdoors from Friday

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NICOLA STURGEON has lifted Scotland’s travel ban as six adults from up to six households can meet outdoors from Friday anywhere across Scotland.

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Remainers lose faith in EU and support Brexit after bloc's bitter vaccine threats

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Brussels’ bitter vaccine threats have convinced angry Remainers to turn their backs on the European Union and support Brexit, research has revealed.

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Biden, Congress to pay tribute to slain Capitol Police officer

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WASHINGTON — U.S. Capitol Police Officer William Evans, who was killed earlier this month when a man rammed his car into him and another officer at the Capitol, will lie in honor in the building’s Rotunda on Tuesday.

Evans, an 18-year veteran of the force, will be the fourth Capitol Police officer to ever lie in honor. The arrival ceremony is set for 10:30 a.m.

At 11 a.m., President Joe Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., will pay tribute to Evans at a congressional ceremony inside the Rotunda. The officer’s family, along with members of the Capitol Police and Congress, are also expected to attend.

“In giving his life to protect our Capitol and our country, Officer Evans became a martyr for our democracy,” Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement, adding it was “the great and solemn privilege of the House of Representatives and the Senate to convey the appreciation and the sadness of the Congress and country for the heroic sacrifice of Officer Evans with a lying-in-honor ceremony in the U.S. Capitol.”

Evans, who was known as “Billy,” served with Capitol Police since 2003 and was working in the first responders Unit. He leaves behind two young children.

He was killed on April 2 when a man drove a car into him and another officer before hitting a security barricade outside the Capitol. The man, 25-year-old Noah Green, of Indiana, got out of the vehicle and lunged at the officers with a knife before being shot and killed by police, acting Chief Yogananda Pittman said.

The memorial for Evans comes three months after the attack on the Capitol by a mob of Trump supporters, which resulted in the death of Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick. His remains were also laid in honor in the Rotunda. Another Capitol Police officer, Howard Liebengood, died by suicide in the days after the riot.



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