Federal prosecutors recommended not to charge Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz as part of a sex trafficking investigation, RadarOnline.com has learned, citing potential credibility issues for two of the main witnesses involved in the probe.
Insiders said that due to this development, a conviction would be unlikely even if they indicted the Florida native.
Senior department officials will still decide, although a report by The Washington Post highlights that it is "rare for such advice to be rejected" given the time and resources needed to proceed.
The investigation has been going on for around two years and legal sources familiar with the case said that Gaetz was being looked into for three possible crimes: sex trafficking a 17-year-old; violating the Mann Act, which prohibits taking women across state lines for prostitution; and obstructing justice.
Gaetz has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and has not been charged with any crime.
He could, however, still be charged if new evidence emerges.
The aforementioned 17-year-old is said to be one of the two witnesses whose testimony would not convince a jury.
As for the second questionable witness, that was claimed to be Joel Greenberg, the former tax collector and friend of Gaetz who last year pleaded guilty to multiple crimes in a case that led to the investigation of the congressman.
- Matt Gaetz Cleared: DOJ Decides Not To Charge Embattled Congressman After Years-Long Sex Trafficking Investigation
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- Feds Investigating Matt Gaetz For Obstruction Over Alleged Phone Call To Witness In Sex Trafficking Probe
"Greenberg had [previously] sent letters to the school falsely claiming the teacher had an inappropriate sexual relationship with a student — a similar allegation to the Gaetz case," the report stated, as to why his claims could be questioned.
As part of a deal, Greenberg agreed to plead guilty to six criminal charges, including sex trafficking of a child, aggravated identity theft, and wire fraud.
His sentencing is scheduled for later this year.
Back in January, Gaetz's ex-girlfriend testified before a federal grand jury and was in talks with prosecutors about an immunity deal.
"This may be a willing participant who has a smart lawyer who sought an immunity deal from the government," said CBS News legal analyst Rikki Kleiman. "The government does not give immunity blindly, they know what they're getting in exchange."