Joel Greenberg Asks for Sentencing Delay to Keep Working With Sex Trafficking Investigation

Joel Greenberg, the associate of U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz implicated in a sex trafficking investigation, is seeking a sentencing delay to continue cooperating with authorities.

Greenberg pleaded guilty in May to sex trafficking of a minor and five other charges in addition to the nearly three dozen he faced. According to court documents filed Tuesday, Greenberg's lawyer is seeking to postpone his sentencing for 90 days, the Associated Press reported.

"Said cooperation, which could impact his ultimate sentence, cannot be completed by the time of his sentencing," Greenberg's lawyer, Fritz Scheller, wrote.

The current sentencing date for Greenberg is scheduled for Aug. 19. Scheller said the extra time is imperative to Greenberg's cooperation with investigators.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Greenberg
Fritz Scheller, Joel Greenberg's attorney, speaks to the press after Greenberg, a former tax collector in Seminole County, pleaded guilty to six federal charges including a child sex trafficking charge at the United States Federal Courthouse on May 17, 2021 in Orlando, Florida. Greenberg is a close associate of U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL). Octavio Jones/Getty Images

Greenberg, the former Seminole County tax collector, currently faces an estimated 12 years in prison, his lawyer noted. Greenberg, 36, also pleaded guilty to identity theft, wire fraud and conspiracy.

Gaetz, a Republican who represents much of the Florida Panhandle, was not mentioned in Greenberg's plea agreement. But Greenberg's cooperation could play a role in an ongoing investigation into Gaetz's supposed pay-for-sex relationship with a 17-year-old girl.

While not mentioning Gaetz by name, in his plea deal Greenberg said he "introduced the minor to other adult men, who engaged in commercial sex acts."

Gaetz, a close ally of former President Donald Trump, has denied any allegations of wrongdoing and has said repeatedly he will not resign from Congress. No charges have been brought against Gaetz.

Greenberg has been linked to a number of other Florida politicians and their associates. So far, none of them have been implicated by name in the sex trafficking probe.

The Greenberg plea agreement says that he admitted being "involved in what are sometimes referred to as 'sugar daddy' relationships where he paid women for sex, but attempted to disguise the payments as 'school-related' expenses or other living expenses."

A federal judge in Orlando did not immediately rule on Greenberg's request for a delay. Scheller said in the court documents that prosecutors do not oppose it.

Gaetz
Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., right, walks at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, June 22, 2021. Alex Brandon/AP Photo