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Matt Gaetz elopes to California, marries girlfriend

August 22, 2021 GMT
FILE - U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., and his girlfriend Ginger Luckey enter "Women for American First" event, Friday, April 9, 2021, in Doral, Fla. Gaetz eloped to Southern California marrying Ginger Luckey in a small ceremony on Catalina Island. The 39-year-old Republican announced the Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021 wedding on his personal Twitter page. He exclaimed “I love my wife!” along with a photo of them together. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier, file)
FILE - U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., and his girlfriend Ginger Luckey enter "Women for American First" event, Friday, April 9, 2021, in Doral, Fla. Gaetz eloped to Southern California marrying Ginger Luckey in a small ceremony on Catalina Island. The 39-year-old Republican announced the Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021 wedding on his personal Twitter page. He exclaimed “I love my wife!” along with a photo of them together. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier, file)
FILE - U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., and his girlfriend Ginger Luckey enter "Women for American First" event, Friday, April 9, 2021, in Doral, Fla. Gaetz eloped to Southern California marrying Ginger Luckey in a small ceremony on Catalina Island. The 39-year-old Republican announced the Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021 wedding on his personal Twitter page. He exclaimed “I love my wife!” along with a photo of them together. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier, file)

MIAMI (AP) — U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida eloped to Southern California, marrying his girlfriend Ginger Luckey on Saturday in a small ceremony on Catalina Island.

The controversial 39-year-old Republican, who is under investigation as part of a sex trafficking probe, announced the wedding on his personal Twitter page. He exclaimed “I love my wife!” along with a photo of them together — he in a sport coat, she in a white dress.

Vanity Fair reports that Sergio Gor, a former staffer for Sen. Rand Paul, performed the ceremony that was attended by about 40 people. The couple had previously announced they would marry next year.

Gaetz had been in Iowa on Thursday with Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, speaking at a rally that is part of a national tour where they falsely claim the 2020 election was stolen from President Donald Trump and downplay the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Luckey, 26, is from Southern California and works for a company that focuses on extending the life of products made from plant-based materials.

Gaetz is under investigation as part of a probe that led to the arrest and plea deal of his close friend, Joel Greenberg, a former Seminole Count, Florida, tax collector.

Greenberg pleaded guilty last May to six federal crimes, including sex trafficking of a child, identity theft, stalking, wire fraud and conspiracy to bribe a public official. His plea agreement with prosecutors requires continued cooperation with an ongoing probe into sex trafficking.

Gaetz, 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. He has repeatedly denied wrongdoing.