FBI agents seized electronic devices belonging to Mayor Eric Adams earlier this week as part of an ongoing federal investigation into his 2021 campaign fundraising activities, according to a statement from Adams’ campaign attorney, Boyd Johnson.
Adams reportedly handed over the devices to federal agents after an event on Monday night, with additional devices provided later during the course of the investigation. Johnson emphasized that the mayor, though not accused of any wrongdoing, remains cooperative and transparent with investigators.
The FBI’s action follows the recent raid on the Brooklyn home of Brianna Suggs, Adams’ chief fundraiser, sparking speculation of a potential connection between the campaign, a Brooklyn construction company, and the Turkish government regarding alleged foreign money funneling.
Adams, a former member of law enforcement, asserted his commitment to lawful conduct, stating, “I expect all members of my staff to follow the law and fully cooperate with any sort of investigation.”
Reports indicate that Adams’ campaigns paid Suggs’ firm over $150,000 between 2021 and 2023, while a political action committee supporting Adams allocated $100,000 to Suggs’ firm for consulting and fundraising, according to state records.
Defending Suggs, Adams affirmed her capabilities, noting her history with the campaign. However, he has distanced himself from interference, stating he did not speak with Suggs on the day of the raid.
Amidst the investigation, Adams has retained the services of the law firm William Hale, enlisting former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara and former city lawyer Brendan McGuire.
The mayor’s abrupt return from Washington, D.C. following the raid was explained as a demonstration of leadership and support for his team. Adams addressed the matter during a press briefing, shedding light on his decision to prioritize being present in the city.
The news of the investigation has drawn attention at the annual SOMOS conference in Puerto Rico, where Adams is notably absent. Some politicians expressed concern, emphasizing the distraction from pressing issues such as affordability, housing, and childcare that are on New Yorkers’ minds. Sen. Jessica Ramos remarked, “We actually don’t need him to get stuff done. We need him to get work done.”