At Sen. Bob Menendez’s bribery trial, prosecutors spotlight his spouse’s determined funds | EUROtoday

Get real time updates directly on you device, subscribe now.

Prosecutors at Sen. Bob Menendez’s bribery trial confirmed jurors a whole lot of texts, emails and telephone calls over two days that present his girlfriend-turned-wife’s determined monetary state of affairs earlier than New Jersey businessmen she had lengthy recognized got here to the rescue.

Prosecutors elicited the proof by the testimony of an FBI agent for a second day Wednesday as they sought to point out that Menendez, 70, conspired with three businessmen and his spouse, Nadine Menendez, 57, in a bribery scheme that enriched the couple with gold bars, a whole lot of hundreds of {dollars} in money and a luxurious automotive.

The Menendezes and two of the businessmen have pleaded not responsible, whereas the third pleaded responsible and is scheduled to testify. Nadine Menendez’s trial was postponed till July after she was identified with breast most cancers.

Through the lengthy presentation of communications that was anticipated to proceed into Thursday, prosecutors have sought to hint the connection between Menendez and the lady he started courting in early 2018, recognized then as Nadine Arslanian.

Prosecutors say the trajectory of the connection coincided with a bribery scheme that led the senator to assist one businessman and codefendant, Wael Hana, win an unique contract with Egypt to certify all meat exported there from the United States as assembly non secular necessities, whereas aiding two different businessmen financially and by serving to them acquire favorable outcomes with legal instances in New Jersey.

Jurors noticed some textual content messages Wednesday through which Menendez and Arslanian exchanged loving sentiments, with a kissing or coronary heart emoji. In one message Arslanian informed the senator: “You can never lose me because I will never let go.”

Other communications confirmed that through the summer season of 2019, Arslanian was at risk of dropping her dwelling in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, after lacking almost $20,000 in mortgage funds.

Hana supplied the cash to save lots of the house, the place Menendez moved after marrying Arslanian in 2020. Prosecutors say the cash was a part of bribes the couple obtained because the senator helped Hana’s firm safe its monopoly on the certifying of meat exports to Egypt.

Defense attorneys say Menendez did nothing outdoors the bounds of what politicians sometimes do for constituents. The 13 gold bars present in a 2022 FBI raid on the house belonged to Nadine Menendez, they are saying, and the explanation there was $480,000 in money stuffed in jackets, bins and a secure was as a result of the senator was traumatized by the lack of his household’s fortune earlier than he was born.

Menendez has additionally mentioned by his attorneys that his spouse saved him at the hours of darkness about her monetary troubles and he did nothing unlawful.

Among different costs, Menendez is accused of performing as a international agent of Egypt. After his fall arrest, he was pressured to give up his highly effective put up as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.