Subpoenas issued in Menendez investigation as it expands

May 13, 2023
Jen Krausz

Long-time Democrat New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez, the Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, is under federal investigation for corruption for the third time in the last decade, and that investigation expanded last week when more subpoenas were issued, according to the Daily Wire (although that publication erroneously said he was a senator in New York).

One of the subpoenas went to North Bergen Mayor Nicholas Sacco, a powerful politician in the state, sources said. Prosecutors were seeking information about “certain legislative changes in New Jersey,” but no specific details were given regarding the subpoena.

“Mayor Sacco has been assured that he is not a target of the investigation and was approached only as a potential witness, and he intends to cooperate fully and provide any requested information as he would with any law enforcement inquiry,” a spokesperson said.

Reportedly, the investigation started when prosecutors looked into a New Jersey-based halal meat business with connections to Menendez's wife that got an exclusive worldwide contract to certify halal exports, but the latest subpoenas are not related to that part of the investigation.

Previous federal case

The investigations into Menendez began in 2012 when prosecutors discovered evidence that Menendez was allegedly having sex with underage prostitutes in the Dominican Republic.

By 2015, Menendez was indicted on charges that he accepted “luxury vacations, golf outings, campaign donations and expensive flights” from Florida doctor Salomon Melgen in exchange for political favors, but the feds were not able to make the charges stick to Menendez, despite the fact that they rarely lose cases.

After the mistrial, prosecutors wanted to retry Menendez on some of the charges, but the judge dropped 7 of the 18 charges and the rest were not pursued.

Melgen was convicted in 2018 of massive Medicare fraud of over $105,000 and sent to prison, but his sentence was later commuted by then-President Donald Trump after over 100 former patients wrote to him to say that Melgen had helped them by treating them when they couldn't afford care and other forms of help.

Similar but different

The current investigation is similar to the previous one, according to sources close to the case, but involves a completely different set of people.

In other words, they think Menendez was exchanging political favors for even more stuff. Some people just don't learn, I guess.

Maybe the feds will even be able to prove it this time, who knows? Usually, a case would not be brought against a congressman for a second time unless the DOJ was pretty sure it could make them stick.

While these subpoenas don't involve the meat producer, that could be the bribery at the heart of the new case, if the sources are correct.

Still, Menendez is innocent until proven guilty, so we'll see what happens.

Maybe the feds will be able to get him at last, or maybe he'll slip out of their grasp yet again.

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