FBI Seizes Eric Adams’ Phone as Investigation Into The NY Mayor Heats Up
The FBI seized the electronic devices of New York City Mayor Eric Adams – three phones and an iPad – as part of a federal corruption investigation that previously brought the FBI to the home of his top fundraiser.
The Mayor’s office confirmed that the seizure took place last week, but that is all they would say. The Mayor has denied any wrongdoing.
“As a former member of law enforcement, I expect all members of my staff to follow the law and fully cooperate with any sort of investigation—and I will continue to do exactly that. I have nothing to hide,” Adams said in a statement.
The ongoing probe of Adams is in connection to an investigation into whether Hizzoner’s 2021 campaign colluded with the Turkish government and others to direct money into his mayoral campaign.
According to reporting first revealed by the NY Post, the Feds are now focusing on a series of texts that were found on his phone suggesting Adams helped fast-track the opening of the Turkish government’s new diplomatic headquarters in Manhattan. The September 2021 texts between Adams — who was then the Brooklyn borough president and Democratic mayoral nominee — and Turkish Consul General Reyhan Özgür and then-FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro were uncovered by FBI agents Monday after they seized Adams’ electronic devices.
Since the seizure, the Feds’ questions about the content on the devices have centered on these texts, sources told the Post. However, the messages don’t appear to show any criminal activity beyond typical outreach that elected officials do on behalf of constituents, according to several sources briefed on the matter.
Federal authorities are investigating whether the Turkish government or Turkish citizens illegally funneled donations to Adams’ campaign by using “straw donors,” a scheme where contributors listed in official records aren’t the actual source of funding, and whether Adams did quid-pro-quo favors.
The investigators were specifically looking for proof that the campaign kicked back benefits to leaders and staffers at Brooklyn-based KSK Construction Group and Turkish officials.
The seizure of Adams’ electronic devices came four days after FBI agents armed with a warrant burst into the Brooklyn home of his lead campaign fundraiser, 25-year-old Brianna Suggs, seeking documents related to contributions to Adams’ 2021 campaign, as well as records of travel to Turkey by campaign employees that could reveal more about any ties to the Turkish government.
The raid prompted the Mayor to cancel a meeting with White House officials about the Big Apple’s mounting migrant crisis. Adams – who has criticized President Biden’s lax border policies – flew back to New York City almost as soon as he had landed in DC.
Adams’ campaign attorney, Boyd Johnson, said Friday that the Mayor was cooperating with federal authorities and had already reported that an internal review found “an individual had recently acted improperly.”
“In the spirit of transparency and cooperation, this behavior was immediately and proactively reported to investigators,” Johnson said.