Democratic Senator Bob Menendezfrom New Jersey, was defiant in the face Federal corruption charges He eroded Democratic support in his state on Monday, saying the cash authorities found in his home came from his savings account and was on hand for emergencies.
In front of the press and without answering questions, he said he believed he would be acquitted and that prosecutors sometimes get the facts wrong.
“I realize this is going to be the biggest fight yet, but as I’ve said throughout this whole process, I firmly believe that when all the facts are presented, I will not only be exonerated, but I will remain the longest serving Senator from the State of New Jersey.Menendez said at the campus of Hudson County Community College in Union City, where he grew up. He did not comment on whether he would run for re-election next year.
Regarding the accusations that Authorities found cash in envelopes and clothes at his homeMenendez said the money came from him Personal savings account This was because their parents feared that the money they earned from their stay in Cuba would be confiscated.
In Washington, where the Senate is closely divided, some of Menendez’s Democratic colleagues have not called for his resignation, most notably Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York and Dick Durbin of Illinois.
However, Menendez resigned as chairman of the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Schumer said on Friday, when the impeachment was announced.
Menendez has denied committing any crime in the federal case against him, his wife and three accomplices. In an emailed statement last week, he accused prosecutors of distorting “the normal functioning of a congressional office” and said he would not allow his work in the Senate to be distracted by “baseless accusations.” His wife’s lawyer said he “denies any criminal conduct and will vigorously contest these allegations in court.”
He and his wife Nadine Menendez He is accused of accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, gold and a luxury car from three New Jersey businessmen for various acts of corruption.
According to the accusation, Menendez He used his influence to intervene in three criminal cases and put pressure on regulatory bodies US Agriculture to protect the business interests of a partner and used his position as Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee Influencing American policy towards Egypt
Prosecutors say he met with Egyptian military and intelligence officials, passed on non-public information about employees at the US Embassy in Cairo, and wrote a letter on behalf of Egypt asking his Senate colleagues to release $300 million in aid.
Federal agents who searched his home in 2022 found more than $480,000 in cash stuffed in envelopes and hidden in clothes, closets and a safe, as well as… Gold bullion worth more than $100,000According to the prosecution. They added that another $70,000 was discovered inside his wife’s deposit box.
State Democratic leaders, including Gov. Phil Murphy, state party chairs and legislative leaders, along with some of Menendez’s colleagues in Congress, are calling for him to resign.
(With information from AP)