Menendez Charged With Conspiracy To Act As Foreign Agent Of Egypt

Menendez Charged With Conspiracy To Act As Foreign Agent Of Egypt

US Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) was hit with a new charge Thursday that he conspired to act as an agent of the Egyptian government while he was head of the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee.

In a superseding indictment filed in Manhattan federal court, Menendez was accused of violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), which requires anyone acting as “an agent of a foreign principal” to register with the US government. Menendez was prohibited from doing so either way as a member of Congress.

The new charge comes weeks after Menendez and his wife Nadine were indicted for allegedly accepting bribes, as well as having “promised to take and took a series of acts on behalf of Egypt, including on behalf of Egyptian military and intelligence officials.”

According to the indictment, Menendez and his wife, along with business associate Wael Hana, met with an Egyptian intelligence official in Menendez’s Senate office in Washington DC, during which they discussed a US citizen who was injured in a 2015 airstrike by the Egyptian military – an incident which some members of Congress cited as a reason to withhold certain military aid to Egypt.

Shortly after the meeting, the Egyptian official texted Hana that if Menendez took care of the matter, “he will sit very comfortably.”

Hana texted back, “Orders, consider it done.”

In an email, Hana’s attorney, Lawrence Lustberg, said the “new allegation that Wael Hana was part of a plot concocted over dinner to enlist Senator Menendez as an agent of the Egyptian Government is as absurd as it is false.”

“As with the other charges in this indictment, Mr. Hana will vigorously defend against this new and baseless allegation,” he wrote.

Menendez and his wife have pleaded not guilty to the charges lodged against them last month. Hana pleaded not guilty last month to charges including conspiracy to commit bribery.

After Hana’s company was granted a lucrative monopoly by the Egyptian government to certify that all meat imported into that country met religious requirements, prosecutors said, Menendez urged U.S. agriculture officials to stop questioning the deal. –AP

Menendez was also accused of accepting “cash, gold, payments toward a home mortgage, compensation for a low-or-no-show job, a luxury vehicle, and other things of value” as part of a “corrupt relationship” with businessman Fred Daibes.

Daibes, a developer and former bank chairman, allegedly gave Menendez gold bars valued at approximately $400,000, in exchange for assistance in a case in which he faced federal bank charges.

Instead of facing over 10 years in prison, Daibes, a felon, only ended up serving probation after striking an agreement with the US Attorney’s Office in New Jersey.

“For purposes of the Federal Extortion Act, it makes no difference if the senator took an official act so long as he accepted the money and there was knowledge the money was in exchange for that official influence, even if he never carried out what he had promised he would do,” according to NBC Legal Analyst Danny Cevallos.

Menendez disclosed that his family had accepted gold bars in 2020. Daibes encountered bank fraud charges that could have netted him up to a decade in prison for lying about a nearly $2 million loan from Mariner’s Bank, where Daibes served as chairman.

Last year, however, New Jersey’s U.S. Attorney’s Office agreed to let Daibes plead guilty to one count and serve probation. They said Daibes had repaid the loan. -Fox News

According to the report, Menendez, 69, is ‘close’ with US Attorney Philip Sellinger – having supported him for the position, while Sellinger had previously raised funds for Menendez’s campaign.

Menendez also allegedly pushed prosecutors to grant leniency to friends of his associates.

One businessman, Jose Uribe, bought Nadine Menendez a $60,000 Mercedes Benz after she killed a man in a 2018 crash.

You know it’s bad when…

Tyler Durden
Thu, 10/12/2023 – 18:40 Source

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