FBI seizes New York City Mayor Eric Adams’ phones as part of federal investigation into fundraising
By Kara Scannell and Gloria Pazmino, CNN |
CNN — FBI agents seized the cell phones of New York City Mayor Eric Adams as part of a federal investigation into campaign fundraising, a person familiar with the matter told CNN on Friday.
The agents seized the phones and an iPad earlier this week pursuant to a court authorized search warrant, the person said.
The seizure is a dramatic escalation of the federal probe into whether foreign money was funneled to his campaign, bringing it directly to the mayor, a Democrat. The investigation is being handled by the FBI and the US attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York. Adams has not been accused of any wrongdoing so far, but he is the latest politician to come under scrutiny for ties to foreign governments – in his case Turkey.
The seizure came days after the FBI raided the home of Adams’ chief fundraiser as part of the investigation to determine whether the mayor’s 2021 campaign conspired with a Brooklyn-based construction company to funnel foreign money into campaign coffers.
The New York Times first reported the seizure of Adams’ electronic devices. To obtain a search warrant, prosecutors would need to convince a judge that they have probable cause that there is evidence of a crime on the electronic devices.
New York Mayor Eric Adams attends a press conference on gun violence prevention and public safety on July 31, 2023 in New York City.
FBI investigation of NYC Mayor Eric Adams fundraiser centers on illegal contributions from foreign nationals
“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,” the mayor said in a statement to CNN on Friday. “I have nothing to hide.”