US Senator Menendez Faces New Charges as Arraignment Approaches
Senator Menendez to Plead to New Indictment
U.S. Senator Bob Menendez is set to enter a plea on Monday to a new indictment charging him with conspiring to act as an unregistered foreign agent for the Egyptian government. Federal prosecutors accused the New Jersey Democrat of taking actions on behalf of Egyptian military and intelligence officials from 2018 to 2022. The arraignment before U.S. District Judge Sidney Stein is scheduled for 3 p.m. EDT.
Previous Charges and Not Guilty Pleas
Menendez and his wife Nadine had previously been charged with accepting cash and gold bars from three New Jersey businessmen in exchange for using his influence to benefit Egypt’s government and interfere with law enforcement probes. On September 27, all defendants pleaded not guilty to those charges. However, on October 18, Nadine Menendez and one of the businessmen, Wael Hana, pleaded not guilty to the new foreign agent charge.
Foreign Agents Registration Act and Allegations
Under the Foreign Agents Registration Act, individuals must register with the department if they act as “an agent of a foreign principle.” Prosecutors claim that Hana arranged meetings between Senator Menendez and Egyptian officials, who pressured him to approve military aid. In return, Nadine Menendez was put on the payroll of a company controlled by Hana. The new indictment states that both Hana and Nadine Menendez communicated requests and directives from Egyptian officials to the senator.
Menendez’s Response and Resistance
In an October 12 statement, Senator Menendez defended himself, stating that “piling new charge upon new charge does not make the allegations true.” Despite calls from fellow Democrats to resign, Menendez has chosen to remain in his position.
As the arraignment approaches, the outcome of this case remains uncertain. It is critical to remember that everyone is innocent until proven guilty. We will continue to monitor this situation and provide updates as they become available.