World

FBI seizes devices from New York City mayor Eric Adams as part of funding probe

FBI agents have seized phones and an iPad from New York City mayor Eric Adams as part of an investigation into his campaign fundraising (Eduardo Verdugo/AP)
FBI agents have seized phones and an iPad from New York City mayor Eric Adams as part of an investigation into his campaign fundraising (Eduardo Verdugo/AP)

FBI agents have seized phones and an iPad from New York City mayor Eric Adams as part of an investigation into his campaign fundraising, his lawyer has confirmed.

The seizures happened after an event on Monday, a statement from the mayor’s lawyer Boyd Johnson said on Friday.

“On Monday night, the FBI approached the mayor after an event. The mayor immediately complied with the FBI’s request and provided them with electronic devices,” the statement said.

“The mayor has not been accused of any wrongdoing and continues to co-operate with the investigation.”

The seizure of the devices, first reported by The New York Times, came days after federal agents searched the Brooklyn home of Mr Adams’ top campaign fundraiser Brianna Suggs.

That search prompted the mayor to cancel a planned trip to meet White House officials in Washington and instead return to New York.

Mr Adams, a Democrat, said nothing publicly about his phones being seized when he met reporters on Wednesday and said he was not aware of any wrongdoing by members of his campaign team.

In a statement on Friday, Mr Johnson said Mr Adams is committed to co-operating with the probe.

“After learning of the federal investigation, it was discovered that an individual had recently acted improperly. In the spirit of transparency and cooperation, this behaviour was immediately and proactively reported to investigators,” he said, offering no further details.

A spokesperson for the US attorney in Manhattan declined to comment.

“As a former member of law enforcement, I expect all members of my staff to follow the law and fully co-operate with any sort of investigation — and I will continue to do exactly that. I have nothing to hide,” Mr Adams, a former police captain, said in a statement.

The focus of the investigation has not been publicly disclosed by prosecutors, but a search warrant obtained by The New York Times indicated authorities are examining whether the Adams campaign conspired with the Turkish government to receive donations from foreign sources, funnelled through straw donors.

Mr Adams on Wednesday said he had no personal knowledge of any improper fundraising and did not believe he had anything to personally fear from the investigation.

Neither Mr Adams nor Ms Suggs have been publicly accused of wrongdoing.

At the time, the mayor’s chief City Hall lawyer had confirmed that the administration was communicating with federal prosecutors, but declined to discuss what that entailed.