Suspect pleads guilty in $25 million scheme to defraud Gaetz family

Local News

Stephen Alford

FORT WALTON BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — The man accused of trying to extort $25 million out of a local politically powerful family has pleaded guilty.

Stephen Alford, 62, went to former Florida Senate President Don Gaetz and told him he needed $25 million in order to free an Iranian prisoner.

Matt Gaetz
Congressman Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., speaks at a “Women for American First” event Friday, April 9, 2021, in Doral, Fla. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)

Once that happened Alford claimed he could then arrange a presidential pardon for Gaetz’s son, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Niceville) who is allegedly the subject of a federal investigation.

Don Gaetz called in the authorities who placed an undercover FBI agent in the midst of a series of meetings between Alford and Don Gaetz in March and April of this year.

Alford pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud. He is scheduled to be sentenced on February 16.

The investigation into Matt Gaetz is ongoing. In October, multiple media outlets reported that two top prosecutors were added to the case.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest Local News Video

Panhandle Weather Forecast: 12/9/21

Travel back in time at the Bethlehem Christmas Village

Pepsi's Gulf Coast Jam announces 4th night to 2022 festival

Contractor guilty of grand theft

Students gain hands-on experience Oyster Farming

Sandy Ground Ferry begins voyage from Port St. Joe to New York City

More Local News

Don't Miss