FBI Seizes NYC Mayor Eric Adams’ PhoneFBI Seizes NYC Mayor Eric Adams’ Phone

FBI Seizes NYC Mayor’s Phones

The agents of the FBI, as part of a federal investigation into fundraising activities, have seized the cell phones of New York City Mayor Eric Adams, according to a person familiar with the matter who spoke on Friday.

This person revealed that the agents had taken possession of a phone and an iPad earlier in the week, based on a court-approved search warrant. This seizure adds a dramatic twist to the federal investigation, questioning whether foreign funds were used in the campaign that directly led him, a Democrat, to the mayor’s office. The FBI, in collaboration with the U.S. Attorney‘s Office for the Southern District of New York, is currently conducting the investigation.

Mayor Eric Adams Faces Scrutiny

As of now, Mayor Eric Adams has not been accused of any wrongdoing, but he is among the latest politicians to come under scrutiny for connections with foreign governments – in his case, Turkey.

The FBI’s raid on the home of Adams’ chief fundraiser occurred a few days before this revelation, aiming to determine if the mayor’s 2021 campaign colluded with a construction company in Brooklyn to collect foreign funds for the campaign’s coffers.

The NYT first reported the electronic devices’ confiscation. To obtain a search warrant, a judge must be convinced that there is probable cause that electronic devices contain evidence of a crime.

Mayor Adams Cooperates with FBI Inquiry

In a statement on Friday, Mayor Eric Adams, a former member of law enforcement, said, “As a former member of the law enforcement agency, I expect all members of my team to adhere to the law and cooperate fully in any investigation – and I will continue to do just that. I have nothing to hide.”

The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI opted not to provide a comment.

Adams’ campaign attorney and spokesperson, Boyd Johnson, informed the mayor that “the FBI’s request had been complied with immediately, and they were provided with electronic devices” when the FBI contacted Eric Adams on Thursday night after an incident.

“After learning about the federal investigation, it was found that someone had recently engaged in improper conduct,” Johnson said, emphasizing that in the spirit of transparency and cooperation, an immediate and active investigation was initiated.

Mayor Eric Adams: Full FBI Cooperation

Mayor Eric Adams has not faced any allegations of wrongdoing, and he is actively participating and cooperating with the ongoing investigation,” he added.

According to sources, Eric Adams, reading from a public schedule on Friday, delivered a lecture at New York University. Following this, FBI agents approached Adams on the street and, according to sources, “walked with him.”

The sources said that the agents instructed him to put his NYPD security details aside. After that, they boarded Adams’ SUV issued by the city and presented a warrant to seize his electronic devices.

FBI Seizes Mayor Adams’ Devices Amid Review

Typically, the mayor reads public remarks from an iPad and has two phones. All three devices are said to be in the possession of the FBI.

Mayor Adams' Devices Amid Review
Mayor Adams’ Devices Amid Review

After the FBI raided the home of the chief fundraiser on November 2, Eric Adams immediately ordered a review of the campaign’s records to determine if any “improper conduct” had occurred.

Sources revealed that as a result of the review, both the campaign and City Hall lawyers provided evidence that “an individual” had engaged in improper conduct. However, sources refrained from commenting on who this person was or what role they played in the campaign.

Lawyers later provided investigative teams with information about their findings.

“It appears they used this information to prepare a warrant and used it to obtain these devices,” the sources said.

Eric Adams Surrenders Devices, FBI Widens Probe

On the same night, upon returning home, Eric Adams assessed another set of electronics and devices and informed law enforcement agencies that he would hand them over as well. Sources referred to these devices as “old phones.”

FBI teams executed “multiple search warrants” across the entire New York region on November 2, including homes and businesses, following the raid on Adams’ chief fundraiser’s home, which also included the home of Chief Briana Seals, the chief fundraiser collecting funds for Eric Adams’ campaign.

Officials familiar with last week’s search warrants, which targeted Mayor Adams and his chief fundraiser, informed that investigators are looking for evidence that non-U.S. citizens – who have been barred from contributing to political campaigns – entered New York’s Turkish-American communities and collected donations from Turkish-American citizens.

Eric Adams Denies Wrongdoing in Fundraising

The scheme allegedly involved hiding money from foreign businesses in American communities and presenting it as donations from U.S. citizens.

News of the raid prompted Adams to defend his campaign in front of reporters on Wednesday.

Adams Denies Wrongdoing in Fundraising
Adams Denies Wrongdoing in Fundraising

“It really will shock me if services that were inappropriate were delivered through my campaign,” Adams said, noting that it will not only shock him but also cause him distress.

Mayor Eric Adams highlighted his ties to New York’s Turkish-American community, mentioning his Lower Manhattan flag-raising ceremony and at least two visits to Turkey as Brooklyn Borough President.

Adams Honored; Legal Process Ongoing

In August 2015, the Turkish consulate honored Eric Adams with a flag-raising ceremony in a sister city agreement with the district of Üsküdar in Istanbul during his visit.

Earlier in September, the same U.S. Attorney’s Office accused Democratic Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey of crimes related to corruption with the Egyptian government and alleged he accepted bribes. Menendez entered a plea of not guilty to the charges.

It is essential to note that investigations are ongoing, and conclusions regarding any wrongdoing by Mayor Eric Adams or his associates should await the completion of the legal process.

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