Former Gaetz staffer says he has no knowledge of any illegal activity, calls claims 'fabricated'

April 7, 2021
In The News

A former staffer for embattled Rep. Matt Gaetz on Monday vehemently denied that his recent resignation from the congressman’s office proves he had knowledge or evidence that the Florida Republican had engaged in illegal activity, calling the claims “baseless.”

Nathan Nelson, who served as Mr. Gaetz’s military affairs director until earlier this year, held a press conference to rebut media-fueled rumors that he left because was knew the congressman had had sexual relations with a minor. 

“Nothing could be further from the truth. Neither I nor any member of his staff had knowledge of illegal activities,” he said at a press conference in Florida, during which he also said he doubts that his former boss had committed the underlying crimes.

Despite Mr. Nelson having left the congressman’s office, he still serves as an informal adviser.

Mr. Nelson said at the Monday press conference that two FBI agents met with him last week and told him that members of the media had contacted them to claim that his departure was linked to a federal investigation.

The former aide said Monday that he told the agents that any such claims were “baseless” and that he had planned to leave his position before a Justice Department investigation into Mr. Gaetz became public knowledge.

Mr. Gaetz is under federal investigation over accusations of a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl and of traveling with her across state lines, which, if true, would violate federal sex-trafficking laws regardless of the states’ varying ages of consent.