Roger Stone sought Trump pardon for fraudster later convicted in extortion plot against Matt Gaetz
Roger Stone, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and Joel Greenberg (Photo: Joel Greenberg Twitter)

Roger Stone reportedly tried to get pardons for Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and two other men allegedly involved in a sex trafficking scandal.

It had already been known that Stone sought pardons in the final days of Donald Trump's presidency for Gaetz and his "wingman" Joel Greenberg, who has pleaded guilty to sex trafficking, but The Daily Beast has learned that he also lobbied for a pardon for serial fraudster Stephen Alford -- who was later convicted in an extortion scheme against the Florida congressman.

“I have no ‘clients’—these are just people I know have busted their ass to help you get elected President," Stone wrote to Trump in a draft memo.

The Washington Post first revealed Stone's connection to Alford earlier this month, but that report didn't mention Alford's name -- which only appeared in a document the newspaper obtained and uploaded online.

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However, Stone's alliance with Alford fell apart two months after the pardon talks after Alford became the scapegoat for the Gaetz investigation

It's not clear how Alford, who is on probation for a fraud conviction, is connected to Stone, and there's no public record of his efforts to elect Trump, but he did have ties to a Republican lobbyist who was also close to Stone and is an associate of Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska.

Alford pleaded guilty in November 2021 to wire fraud in a scheme to extort $25 million from Gaetz's father, former Florida Senate president Don Gaetz, with the promise of a presidential pardon for his lawmaker son -- who characterized the scheme, with Stone's help, as a "deep state" plot to smear him.

“The ‘leaked’ smear on Congressman Matt Gaetz is an extortion play and an effort to destroy the up and coming conservative leader who has the balls to call the left out,” Stone wrote in a social media post.

The Gaetz campaign started paying Stone around that time for “strategic campaign consulting,” according to federal records, although Stone had been working with Alford just weeks earlier.

“Who else [Alford] was working with, including Roger Stone, is news to us,” said a spokesperson for the Gaetz campaign.

The spokesperson said they weren't aware of Alford's ties to Stone and did not answer when asked whether the lawmaker had ever discussed Alford with Stone.