Federal prosecutors cited the previously undisclosed records of a confidential informant in a new filing responding to efforts by Sen. Bob Menendez’s attorneys. to dismiss the indictment Charges the New Jersey Democrat with accepting bribes from a foreign government and conspiring to act as a foreign agent.
In the 196-page filing, prosecutors cited the existence of memos prepared by at least one “confidential source” discussing the case and a range of evidence they intend to present.
A spokeswoman and attorney for Menendez did not immediately respond to NBC News’ requests for comment Wednesday night.
“The recording of a confidential source discussing the bribery scheme reflects the lack of honor among the thieves,” prosecutors wrote in the filing. The audio recording also suggested that Menendez and his wife were “scammed” by co-defendant Wael Hana. They wrote a Jersey businessman who did not pay them “the full value of the bribe they were supposed to receive”.
Hana’s attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday night.
Menendez and his wife, Hana, are accused of taking bribes. In return, Menendez used his position as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to help Hana win an exclusive halal meat inspection contract with the Egyptian government.
Menendez’s lawyers tried to overturn the indictment, arguing that Menendez’s activities were protected by the Constitution.
Prosecutors allege in the filing that evidence points to Menendez’s involvement in a conspiracy with Hana, the subject of the bribery, and an alleged scheme to benefit the Egyptian government.
“Far from disproving that Menendez and Hana were in a conspiracy, the evidence that Hana took more than what she recognized as bribes and shortchanged Menendez is evidence that a bribery scheme actually existed,” they said.
Prosecutors also shared certain discovery items, including “information obtained from certain confidential sources, including memos kept by the source, briefing reports with the source, and draft translations of audio recordings.”
Menendez and his wife, Nadine Hana, and two other New Jersey businessmen are accused of receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes from the Egyptian government in exchange for the lawmaker’s influence.
Menendez and four other defendants in the case have denied any wrongdoing and pleaded not guilty. Menendez interim fell down as chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee shortly after the indictment. He continues to work as a member of the council.