Matt Gaetz Hooker & Drug Scandal Erupts As His Collapse Continues

0
525

According to a new report from The Daily Beast, which has been chronicling details of issues involving Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), the Trump-allied Congressman snorted cocaine at what the outlet describes as an “after-party” following a GOP fundraiser in Orlando, Florida, back in 2019. The fundraiser connected to Gaetz’s alleged cocaine use was called the “Trump Defender Gala” and took place on October 26, 2019, featuring the Congressman himself as a featured speaker.

The so-called after-party in Orlando involved a woman named Megan Zalonka, who The Daily Beast says will soon be identified by Gaetz ally Joel Greenberg “as one of more than 15 young women Gaetz paid for sex.” Greenberg is pleading guilty to an array of federal offenses and agreeing to cooperate with authorities, providing information relevant to ongoing federal investigative efforts — and authorities have already been known to be looking into Gaetz over issues including potential child trafficking. Gaetz is suspected of possibly victimizing the same then-minor who was trafficked by Greenberg and whose case led to a child sex trafficking charge to which Greenberg is pleading guilty.

Meanwhile, as for the Orlando-area incident involving Gaetz and cocaine, one witness for The Daily Beast “distinctly remembers Zalonka pulling the drugs out of her makeup bag, rolling a bill of cash, and joining Gaetz in snorting the cocaine,” as summarized by the publication. Besides the reporting that Greenberg himself was prepared to identify Zalonka as one of the women paid by Gaetz in exchange for sex, The Daily Beast adds that “two sources said the pair had an ongoing financial relationship in exchange for sex.” Besides the potential child sex trafficking, any prostitution might result in charges and criminal proceedings against Gaetz.

Notably, Gaetz “wrote off the stay at the hotel as a campaign expense, with his donors picking up the tab,” according to The Daily Beast.

Another notable development is that in August 2020 Zalonka was served with a grand jury subpoena, although CNN noted that there was “no indication the subpoena was related to Gaetz.” Still, Zalonka “was subpoenaed to testify in August by the same prosecutor who had indicted Greenberg two months earlier,” CNN adds, and federal authorities haven’t formally confirmed their investigation into Gaetz at all, so that connection via the prosecutor could be all that’s available for now. Authorities could be purposefully leaving Gaetz’s name out of public statements to preserve the integrity of their proceedings. The Congressman himself has certainly confirmed that he’s been under investigative scrutiny.