Obstruction of justice in Bob Menendez bribery case

Sen. Bob Menendez, TNJ, was arraigned Tuesday after he and his wife were charged with conspiracy to obstruct justice in a bribery case against them.

The indictment against Menendez and his wife, Nadine, brings to 18 the total number of federal charges the Senate Foreign Relations Committee's acting chairman faces.

New Accusation It comes days after one of Menendez's co-defendants in the case, New Jersey businessman Jose Uribe, pleaded guilty and agreed to cooperate with the investigation.

Nadine Menendez cited a meeting with Uribe in 2022 that prosecutors said was part of a bribery scheme after federal investigators issued subpoenas seeking information about payments to him for a luxury car. She asked Uribe what he would tell investigators, and he would tell them it was a loan, the filing states. “It was fine,” she told him, according to the indictment.

The senator's lawyer initially told investigators he had no knowledge of car payments or mortgage payments from another businessman, which prosecutors said were part of a bribery scheme. Later, his attorney told investigators he discovered they were not loans, but bribes, when the indictment says he was “well aware” they were.

In a statement on Tuesday, the senator called the new charges a “blatant abuse of power.”

“The government has known for a long time that I learned and helped repay the loans – not the bribes given to my wife,” he said, calling the lawyers “overzealous”.

“I am innocent and I will prove it no matter how many charges they make,” he added.

Attorneys for Bob and Nadine Menendez did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Prosecutors allege that Menendez and his wife used his political influence to receive hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes, including “cash, gold bars, home mortgage payments, compensation for little or no work, a luxury vehicle and other items of value.”

The recidivism charge is the third since they were first charged in September.

Both pleaded not guilty.

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