Joel Greenberg, a former Seminole County, Florida tax collector who sources say agreed to cooperate in the federal investigation into his former associate, Rep. Matt Gaetz, was sentenced Thursday to 11 years in prison after pleading guilty to crimes ranging from wire fraud to the sex-trafficking of a minor.
Greenberg pleaded guilty last May to six of the 33 federal charges he was being accused of, including charges of stalking, identity theft, wire fraud, and conspiracy to bribe a public official, as well as one charge of sex-trafficking.
Greenberg’s case garnered a lot of attention in the spring of 2021 after Americans learned that the investigation into the Seminole County tax collector, had, according to multiple sources, erupted into a sprawling federal probe that included whether Gaetz, his close friend, had had sex with a minor who he met through Greenberg.
Does that mean we should expect charges to be levied against Gaetz anytime soon?
Well, there is lots of evidence that has been reported, like radio host Joe Ellicott who used to work in the Seminole County tax office with longtime Gaetz pal Joel Greenberg — wrote a letter last year admitting that he and Gaetz paid and had sex with an underage girl, whom they trafficked across state lines.
Greenberg even called Gaetz to inform him of the girl’s age. And while Gaetz has denied the allegations, it turns out that Ellicott was in the room at the time of the phone call and said he could provide information to investigators about the brief conversation that took place.
Despite that report and others that seemingly damn Gaetz, some sources close to the investigation say that it has “stalled.”
That is not sitting well with many Americans, including Greenberg’s attorney, Fritz Scheller.
“If the Government is so concerned with general deterrence, then why hasn’t it prosecuted the other individuals, including public figures, who were also involved in Greenberg’s offenses?” Scheller wrote in a memo filed ahead of his client’s sentencing. “Perhaps the DOJ are master strategists far beyond the capabilities of the undersigned. Or perhaps the DOJ is like Nero fiddling away as Rome burns.”
So, at this point it remains to be seen whether or not Gaetz will be prosecuted for sex-trafficking crimes. Perhaps the DOJ is being prudent and careful, or perhaps Gaetz has found a way behind the scenes to avoid prosecution.